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Buck Hill: Uh Huh! Live at Montpelier

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A contemporary of Rollins, Mobley and Trane, tenorman Buck Hill, of Washington, D.C., managed to elude national fame for decades by remaining a day-job-bound family man who rarely worked outside his local turf.

On a personal note, while playing at a D.C. hotel in the mid-’50s, I was advised to check Hill out after work. The subsequent impression he made with his deep broad sound, hip changes and swaggering rhythmic drive all but put the top New York bop tenormen out of mind. His most frequent companions in those years were guitarist Charlie Byrd and bassman Keter Betts, but so masterful was his own playing that I can’t recall whether they were on this particular gig or not.

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