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Charles Lloyd: The Water is Wide

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Charles Lloyd, whose curious career has found him initially embraced equal parts by the flower power crew and by those yearning for spiritual jazz expression, is an affable entrant on the scene each time he deigns to record a new date. Never a prolific recording or touring artist, he has maintained a mystique about him that belies his airy, somewhat introverted approach to the tenor sax and his cautiously low profile. He remains reverent to the spirits that are never very far from his consciousness. One such spirit is Billy Higgins, the living embodiment of elegantly swinging, subtly accented drumming. Though the other band members rotate their appearances on these tracks-one rhythm section is pianist Brad Mehldau and his trio bassist Larry Grenadier, the other assemblage features guitarist John Abercrombie and second bassman Darek Oles-Higgins’ constant presence is a source of continuous rhythmic inspiration for the improvisers.

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