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Terell Stafford: New Beginnings

Trumpeter and flugelhornist Terell Stafford strikes a delicate balance between repertory and original material on his fourth set as a leader, and his debut for MaxJazz. He’s assembled an outstanding band, recruited one of jazz’s best session pianists in Mulgrew Miller and has picked, for the most part, lesser-known tunes to cover. Stafford also rotates musicians and varies the ensemble’s size. The result is a generally good date that might have been a great one except for a couple of selections, such as the passive rendition of “Blame It on My Youth” and “Kumbaya,” a piece that runs about two minutes longer than necessary.

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