Robert Christgau: Dean of American Rock Critics

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Art Blakey

  • Ken Burns Jazz [Verve, 2000] A+

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Ken Burns Jazz [Verve, 2000]
Where MVP's Roots of Jazz Funk Volume One showcased hard bop's pop heads, here the tendency's greatest bandleader accommodates the jazz of a profusion of not-quite-pantheon improvisers. Clifford Brown, Monk, and then take your pick--Lee Morgan, Wayne Shorter, Horace Silver, Johnny Griffin, Bobby Timmons, Wynton Marsalis, not one a titan but here you'd never know it. Heads are pretty catchy too. Plus a whole lot of drummer. A+