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The Concord Jazz Heritage Series

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Album Review

Since tenor saxophonist Scott Hamilton has recorded over 60 albums as both leader and sideman for the Concord label, starting in 1974, there is no way that a single disc (including this 1998 sampler) could possibly do more than hint at his prolific catalog. On the other hand, Hamilton's swing style is virtually unchanged since his early days, so one can get a good idea of his approach from listening to this CD, which has a dozen selections from as many releases. Most of the tenor's more notable collaborations are represented here, with appearances by cornetist Warren Vaché (on "You're Getting to Be a Habit with Me"), baritonist Gerry Mulligan, cornetist Ruby Braff ("A Sailboat in the Moonlight"), pianist Gene Harris, and tenorman Flip Phillips (but surprisingly not pianist Dave McKenna). There is also a cut apiece from an orchestra date and a meeting with organist Mike LeDonne. Fine music, but mainstream tenor collectors will want much more by Scott Hamilton.


Born: 12 September 1954 in Providence, RI

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

When Scott Hamilton appeared in the mid-'70s fully formed with an appealing swing style on tenor (mixing together Zoot Sims and Ben Webster), he caused a minor sensation, for few other young players during the fusion era were exploring pre-bop jazz at his high level. He began playing when he was 16 and developed quickly, moving to New York in 1976. Hamilton played with Benny Goodman in the late '70s, but he has mostly performed as a leader, sometimes sharing the spotlight with Warren Vache, Ruby...
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