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David Liebman: Joy

Album Notes

David Liebman has recorded several tributes to John Coltrane through the years (even though he really doesn't sound like him) and his Candid CD is one of his most rewarding. Utilizing a strong college orchestra, some guests and (on "After the Rain") the 17 flutes and five bass clarinets of the JMU Flute Choir, Liebman performs six of Coltrane's top compositions from the 1961-66 period. He sticks to soprano except for some Indian flute on "India" and pays tribute to Coltrane's creative spirit rather than just imitating his solos. "Alabama" and "Naima" are passionate ballads, "India" sounds exotic and the medley of "Joy" and "Selflessness" are free and intense. There are strong individual moments from pianist Butch Taylor and trumpeter John D'Earth although Liebman is the main soloist throughout. He tackles Coltrane's music on its own terms and the results are fresh and often quite exciting. ~ Scott Yanow


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