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Wobble Walkin'

The Duke Robillard Jazz Trio
BLUE DUCHESS

Once upon a time, it was cool to be smooth, before elevator music became “smooth jazz.” Guitarist Duke Robillard, known for his T-Bone Walker-influenced blues, is smooth in the old-fashioned sense here, subtly swinging through standards, four originals which share their timeless sound, and one rock ‘n’ roll classic. Robillard’s stripped-down trio features bassist Brad Hallen and drummer Mark Teixeira, plus vocalist Mickey Freeman on one song. The title track, a slow shuffle, leads off, setting the tone for an album full of underplayed eloquence. On several older pieces, such as “If I Had You” and “Back Home Again, In Indiana,” there’s an echo of Les Paul, to whom Robillard has previously paid tribute. If you’re looking for the latest 90 mph guitar-slinger, look elsewhere; if you want tasty, bluesy jazz, this record’s for you.