Bud Shank Beyond the Red Door
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- by Phil Woods / Bill Mays ~ Woods & Mays ~ $14.72
- Released: September 4, 2007
- Originally Released: 2007
- Label: Jazzed Media
Down Beat - p.614 stars out of 5 -- "The melancholy intro of 'Carousels,' his sprightly accompaniment and his own solos are full of superb harmonic choices."
JazzTimes - p.78"BEYOND THE RED DOOR shows that thoughtful and thought-provoking music can be fashioned within the simple format of a duo."
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Bud Shank and Bill Mays first joined forces back in the '70s, but the alto saxophonist's opportunities to use one of his favorite pianists diminished when Mays moved to the East Coast. This reunion is a fun-filled duo date with many playful moments, starting with the jubilant take of "The Red Door." Mays' idea to combine two haunting ballads in medley form, Russ Freeman's overlooked gem "The Wind" and "The Peacocks" (one of Jimmy Rowles' best known works and a favorite of the late Bill Evans, among many others), works beautifully, as the two deliver a heartfelt performance. The pianist also contributed his bittersweet waltz "Quietly." Their spacy introduction to the standard "The Touch of Your Lips" is hardly a typical bop arrangement, while the jaunty setting of "Everything I Love" has a choppy flavor and some of Shank's best playing of the session. Shank co-wrote two pieces with his wife Linda: the nostalgic "Carousels" (first conceived as a bossa nova years ago) and the unusual "Why Not Now?," an intriguing work that defies musical labels. Highly recommended! ~ Ken Dryden
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