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Red Garland, Victor Feldman, Don Patterson: Red Garland Revisited!, The Arrival Of Victor Feldman, Boppin' And Burnin'

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Fantasy Records' Original Jazz Classics (OJC) series is up to almost 1000 titles; these three classics are among the titles Fantasy has recently reissued on CD for the series.

When pianist Red Garland was signed to Prestige from 1956-62, he recorded so often that the label had plenty of material in the can long after he'd left. First released in 1969, Red Garland Revisited! comes from a 1957 session that employed Paul Chambers on bass and Al "Tootie" Heath on drums. Garland's Prestige output was quite consistent, and the lyrical, bouncy pianist is in excellent form on "It Could Happen To You," "The Masquerade Is Over" and "Everybody's Somebody's Fool." The trio becomes a quartet with the addition of guitar great Kenny Burrell on "Walkin'" and Miles Davis' "Four."

In the 1980s, Victor Feldman was a hit in the pop-jazz/NAC world thanks to his commercial Generation Band. But his roots were straight-ahead acoustic jazz, which is exactly what you'll find on The Arrival Of Victor Feldman —a 1958 session uniting the British vibraphonist/pianist with bassist Scott LaFaro and drummer Stan Levy. Though he swings hard and fast on Diz's "Bebop," most of the album is an enjoyable example of subtle "cool jazz." A relaxed, laid-back mood defines Feldman's own tunes as well as versions of Ellington's "Satin Doll," Miles Davis' "Serpent's Tooth" and Chop's "Waltz" (a classical piece that works well in a jazz setting).

Hard swinging, however, is the rule on Don Patterson's Boppin' And Burnin', an excellent 1968 session that finds the organist employing trumpeter Howard McGhee, altoist Charles McPherson, guitarist Pat Martino and drummer Billy James. Though Patterson was a Jimmy Smith disciple, this isn't a collection of boogaloos or R&B-influenced soul-jazz grooves. Rather, it's hard bop all the way on McGheee's own material and the songs of Charlie Parker ("Donna Lee," "Now's The Time") and Thelonious Monk ("Epistrophy"). Highly recommended.

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