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Francesco Crosara: Colors

Keyboardist-composer Francesco Crosara has crafted a memorable debut for Southport. While the title, Colors, underscores the diversity of his palette, the title track-confined to tenor sax and piano-isolates the CD’s only weakness: not all gradations blend. Special guest Von Freeman brings a big fat tone and rough edge to a session dominated by the kind of sensitive swing seldom heard since Bill Evans.

As impressive as Freeman’s blues-drenched wailing can be, a Hammond organ better showcases it than the poetic comping of Crosaro’s acoustic piano. Their best partnership is the amalgam of “I Loves You Porgy” and “Bess You Is My Woman.”

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