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George Winston bounces with assertion on 'Restless Wind' / Jazz Weekly

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Back in the 1980s, pianist George Winston almost single-handedly, (well, double handedly, since he played the piano) started a musical genre called "New Age." It was EVERYWHERE, and it was simply "mellow" and impressionistic music, with albums titled December, Autumn and Forest. If you saw him in concert back then, (and what guy didn't take a chick to see him to show how hip he was?) he'd usually do an encore of some fun stride and ragtime. Who knew that this guy could really swing?

Well, this Kenny G of the piano is back and this solo album is a full fisted event. He bounces with assertion on "Autumn Wind" and takes you to a bluesy speakeasy on "Judge, Judge" and the saloon-fested medley of " Muskrat Ramble/I Feel Like I'm Fixin' To Die Rag/ Stop The Bleeding." A reflective gospel read of "A Change Is Gona Come" teams well with a deeply resolved "The Good Earth. He even toys a bit with the piano strings for extra effect on the  anti-war Boomer hit "For What It's Worth" and is dynamic and dramatic on The Doors' "The Unknown Soldier." No hint of "mellow" here; this guy is playing for a dime a dance!

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