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Virginia Mayhew: Nini Green

This debut CD benefits from fine support by pianist Kenny Baron, including his own “Voyage.” Bassist Harvey Swartz is featured on “Invitation” and percussionist Leon Parker adds hot coals to Mayhew’s “Time Alone” (which she says represents “that crazy, burning New York thing”). Her “Blue, Green and Brown” surges with a Caribbean “wave” beat. The album opens with her swinging samba, “Yes or No, Stay or Go.” Mayhew is a solid mainstreamer whose tenor sound recalls Dexter Gordon’s big tone; she plays soprano on “Good Morning Heartache,” taken as a bolero; and alto on the title track, “Nini Green,” a jazz waltz. Ingrid Jensen, trumpet and fluegelhorn, and Adam Cruz, drums, are excellent. The most memorable track is Barron’s bittersweet solo on Mayhew’s ballad, “Maybe Someday.”

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