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Ramsey Lewis Trio: Time Flies

Ramsey Lewis explores his musical roots on Time Flies (Narada). The veteran pianist was deeply influenced not only by jazz, but also by classical and gospel music, and on Time Flies he takes a fresh look at the divergent styles that shaped him as an artist. Lewis opens the album with Brahms’ “Poco Allegretto” from Symphony Number 3 in F Major, and after stating the classical work’s main theme, Lewis and his trio transform it into a swinging jazz workout. Lewis approaches Bach’s “Air” from Suite Number 3 in similar fashion, and his classically influenced composition “Second Thoughts” features cello accompaniment by trio member Larry Gray. Lewis gives his classic “The In Crowd” a snappy, contemporary groove, and he and his trio engage in some wonderful ensemble work on the originals “Hide & Seek” and “Last Dance.” Lewis’ fleet-fingered piano accompanies a gospel choir on gospel singer Yolanda Adams’ “Open My Heart,” and on gospel artist Kirk Franklin’s “Hosanna,” the choir and Lewis’ spirited playing-including a big, dramatic finish-close this outstanding album on an inspirational note.

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