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PROFILES

Anthony Ortega

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You know you're talking about a jazz musician when the artist in question has played and recorded with Elvis, Streisand, Sinatra, Lalo Schifrin, the Lighthouse All-Stars, Quincy Jones, Gerald Wilson, Clifford Brown, Maynard Ferguson, Lionel Hampton, Paul Bley, Dinah Washington and Frank Zappa, to name a few, while still finding time to record soundtracks, release highly regarded and collectible sessions as leader, experience a resurgent wave of acclaim in Europe and despite it all remain virtually unknown in the US.

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anthony Ortega: Afternoon In Paris

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The quixotic enthusiasm of Hatology Records' chief Werner X. Uehlinger for the idiosyncratic music of one- time Lionel Hampton sideman Anthony Ortega continues with this release of a series of solo performances and saxophone-bass duets recorded in 2002 and 2005. The link to Ortega's quiet classic in the sax-bass vein, New Dance (Hatology, 1966), is made explicit with the inclusion of a previously unreleased version of “Ornithology" from that session. Brighter and bouncier than the post-millennium material on the rest ...

PROFILES

Anthony Ortega

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Here is a man who has played with Lionel Hampton, Dizzy Gillespie, Maynard Ferguson, Paul Bley, Quincy Jones, Don Ellis, Dinah Washington, and {{Ella Fitzgerald. Here is a man whose alto saxophone playing has been compared to Charlie Parker's and Ornette Coleman's--both with just cause. Here is a man whose Sixties sessions, long out of print for the most part, are revered by collectors, who hunt them down assiduously--because there have been a few people all these years who knew ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anthony Ortega Trio: Scattered Clouds

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Here is unsung reedman Anthony Ortega in the most stripped-down of contexts: in contrast to the nonet that he recorded with on 1994's Neuf, and even to earlier quartet recordings, here he appears in a bare trio setting. There is a piano and drums but no bassist, and one is not missed: Mike Wofford's piano playing has enough body, and Ortega's saxophone enough rhythmic flight, for the bass not to be missed.

So here is Anthony Ortega, a calling-card showing ...

CD/LP/TRACK REVIEW

Anthony Ortega Trio: Scattered Clouds

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Alto saxophonist Anthony Ortega has swerved in and out of the spotlight for many years whether performing with the Lionel Hampton and Maynard Ferguson big bands or recording a series of solo albums during the 50's. Yet like so many of his fellow jazz brethren, steady work was hard to come by during the somewhat dormant 1960's.

Here, on Scattered Clouds along with West Coast jazz veterans, pianist Mike Wofford and (ex-Bill Evans trio) drummer, Joe LaBarbera, the saxophonist gets ...


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