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Larry Baskett: Poor Boy Blue

Lovers of Chet Baker should take note of this second release by Larry Baskett, a 60-year-old trumpeter/fluegelhornist who, after a 22-year-long hiatus, resumed playing in l984. On the basis of this recording, his chops are in excellent shape, and the interactive support given him by Frank Phipps on euphonium, guitarist Randy Vincent, bassist Chris Amberger and drummer Harold Jones works well to underscore the poignancy at the core of Baskett’s sensibilities. Four of the 12 tunes are originals with attractive melodic themes, while the other numbers include “Milestones” (the pre-modal bop line) and the standards, “Haunted Heart,” “Love Letters” and “There’s No You.” On this last named track, as well as a few others, Baskett also sings, but, despite his obvious sincerity, total appreciation of this aspect of his talent is diminished by an articulation difficulty that results in a pronounced hissing, whistling sound on his “s”‘s.

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