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Herb Robertson

Herb Robertson

The trumpet may be the instrument most identified with jazz, but between Woody Shaw and Dave Douglas few trumpeters emerged that were original. There are some fine ones-Paul Smoker, Roy Campbell, to name but two-but they are not well known to the jazz public. And it’s especially unfortunate that fans are unaware of Herb Robertson, a great trumpeter who had a major impact on Douglas. Perhaps that will change now that Robertson is a co-leader on three recently released CDs, Knudstock 2000 (Cadence), Brooklyn-Berlin (CIMP) and Ritual (CIMP).

Robertson’s an outstanding improviser who uses extended techniques. He’s got a large vocabulary of timbres and textures, including screams, shakes, rasps, growls and clucks. He blows pure air through his horn and creates unique Harmon and plunger-muted effects, exhibiting a fast right hand in the process.

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