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“Papa” John DeFrancesco: Desert Heat

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In terms of talent on the Hammond B3, the apple certainly didn’t fall far from the tree in the DeFrancesco family. Joey DeFrancesco burst onto the jazz scene in a big way back in 1988 when, after his graduation from high school, he toured with Miles Davis. Joey’s prodigious talent on B3 got a tremendous jump start from his dad, Papa John DeFrancesco, a stalwart organ player on the Philadelphia jazz scene for many years. Thanks to his son’s blossoming career, Papa John has had increasing opportunities to record and perform in recent years.

With Joey producing and joining in on keyboards on several cuts, Papa John DeFrancesco cuts loose on a varied set of tunes that underscore his blue-based approach to the B3. Check out his down-and-dirty B3 approach on the “House of the Rising Son” and the funky version of Eddie Harris’ “Cold Duck Time” for prime examples of that style. But there’s some nice variety as well, from the mellow ballad “I’ll Close My Eyes” to the loose jam between dad and son on “Pokuscabadabra.”

Nothing groundbreaking here, but Desert Heat has definite appeal for B3 fans.