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Adam Kolker: Beckon (Sunnyside)

Review of latest album from the veteran saxophonist

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Cover of Beckon by Adam Kolker
Cover of Adam Kolker album Beckon

Adam Kolker is a contrarian. In a world of tenor saxophone players who shout, he often whispers. His measured voice and the purity of his tenor sound do not detract from his relevance and modernity. In fact, his relative quietude makes it easier to perceive the freshness of his ideas about lyricism.

Beckon is not so much a departure for Kolker as it is the furthest logical extension to date of his established musical direction. It is his most intellectual, most ethereal, most soulful album. It is closer to a jazz/classical “Third Stream” than anything he has done before. (Critics wrote off “Third Stream” music a half-century ago, but in fact it is a flourishing jazz genre, even if no one dares call it by its name.)

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