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Detroit Jazz Festival 2013

C. Andrew Hovan By

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Equally enthralling was the next set by trumpeter Terell Stafford in a quintet with saxophonist Tim Warfield, bassist Rodney Whitaker, pianist Bruce Barth, and drummer Dana Hall. Paying homage to Billy Strayhorn, the ensemble's musical concoction was equal parts exploration and burning abandon. Look, these guys are the best in the business and whether it was Stafford blowing a pretty ballad on "Daydream," Warfield unleashing his own sheets of sound, or Barth rollicking along barrelhouse style, the end results were priceless.

Proving to be a hard act to follow, a less incendiary approach would be in the offing as 85-year-old legend Lee Konitz was next in line on the Pyramid schedule. No less engaging though, Konitz brought his cool voice to such standards as "Solar" and "I Can't Get Started." Right in step with their leader, the backing trio would include pianist Dan Tepfer, Ray Drummond, and the always stimulating Matt Wilson. A few more trinkets lay in store for those holding out until the end of the evening, but with a full plate, this reviewer retreated to home turf in order to prepare for a Tuesday start to the work week.

View more photos from the 2013 Detroit Jazz Festival.

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C. Andrew Hovan

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