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Charlie Haden: Copperopolis

Copperopolis is the latest from Charlie Hunter’s working trio with reedman John Ellis and drummer Derrek Phillips. It’s a departure in that Ellis plays not only tenor sax and bass clarinet but also Wurlitzer and melodica, adding harmonic detail and even the occasional touch of melancholy. There’s a melodic, songwriter sensibility evident on “Frontman,” “Blue Sock” and even the minor-key second-line groove “Swamba Redux.” But Hunter foregrounds his irreverent jazz-funk side from the start of “Cueball Bobbin’,” with a coarse, blown-speaker guitar sound that nods in the direction of hard rock.

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