The term "living legend" is used promiscuously in this hyperbolic age, but in the world of jazz, Dave Brubeck certainly qualifies for the designation. Both an innovator and a popularizer, the pianist and composer integrated odd time signatures into the jazz vocabulary while simultaneously enjoying a rare level of commercial success for a jazzman. And in a field with a notoriously high casualty rate, Brubeck has not just survived but thrived into his eighties, living to see his work preserved at a namesake institute at the University of the Pacific and his sons succeed in the family business. The basic format of his performances is well-established, but Brubeck and his quartet still relish finding small moments of surprise as much as fans enjoy hearing them.
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