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Sam Rivers, Ben Street, Kresten Osgood, Bryan Carrott: Purple Violets

Sam Rivers

Certain leftward-leaning jazz musicians occasionally play chord-based jazz as a way of breaking down the defenses of skeptics. It’s a way of getting them to say, “Hey, he really knows what he’s doing,” at which point they might be more open to the free stuff. On Purple Violets, the venerable tenor saxophonist Sam Rivers shows us that, yes, not only is he a phenomenal free player, but he still has powerful straightahead chops, thank you very much.

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