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Tim Weisberg: Undercover

Popular in the ’70s as a rock flutist with Loggins & Messina, Jefferson Starship and many others, Tim Weisberg offers a fresh, fun romp on Undercover (Fahrenheit 9602; 55:31), his 20th career release. Weisberg covers many styles here, from slinky swinging jazz (a nice read of “Moondance,” featuring Kenny Rankin’s smooth vocal) to sultry Latin blues (“Viva-Tirado”) to textured and gentle (“Slow Hot Wind,” utilizing bass and alto flutes to make the mood). Weisberg also brings out the best in collaborator David Benoit; the duo’s exuberant, soulful walking tribute to Herbie Hancock-“Herbie’s Blues”-is an instant classic. Weisberg is at his expressive best in this experimental, try-everything mode, making the smooth, vibratoless lines of “Ballad of the Whale” (a lithe melody from Star Trek IV) convey joy and freedom, and lending bass flute mystery to the opening strains of “Summertime.”

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