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Jimmy Rowles Septet: Weather in a Jazz Vane

Derminedly low key, Rowles was mainly known as an accompanist for singers like Billie, Peggy, Ella, Carmen, and Sarah. Earlier he’d worked with Prez, Benny and Woody (among-many-others) and his lack of public renown was due to his being blessed/cursed with phrase “a musician’s musician.” Here Rowles and his septet (two saxes, trumpet, trombone, bass and drums) are heard on nine weather-themed songs (e.g., “Heat Wave,” “Let It Snow,” “Some Other Spring”) with superb arrangements by Rowles and tenorman Bill Holman. Rowles, who says Lee “made me sing,” essays a vocal on “Too Hot for Words.” Three alternate takes round out this 1958 date originally released on the Andex label. Highly prized for his harmonic imagination, Rowles found a perfect outlet on this project. Those early years served him well more swinging than “precious,” this is a CD to savor.

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