Dr. Michael White: Will the Circle Be Unbroken?


Will the Circle Be Unbroken?


Dr. Michael White (clarinet)


Blue Crescent (Basin Street 0504)

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Dr. Michael White (clarinet), Nicholas Payton (trumpet),

Lucien Barbarin (trombone), Steven Pistorius (piano), Jason Marsalis (drums)


Composed by Ada R. Habershon


Recorded: New Orleans, February 9-12, 2008


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

This song may be better known as a gospel or folk or roots tune, and its origins can be traced back to British-born Christian tunesmith Ada Ruth Habershon. But it sounds like a Crescent City original in the hands of Dr. Michael White and company. White is one of the leading exponents of the New Orleans tradition walking the planet. Don't let his doctorate fool you: there is nothing academic about his trad jazz work. The style of performance here might be one hundred years old, but it wears it well, huh? The counterpoint of the horns is especially fine on this track. My only gripe is that the performance winds down after only 2 minutes. If I were in the second line, I'd demand an immediate encore.

Reviewer: Ted Gioia

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