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It is difficult to believe that veteran pianist Richard Wyands' first date for an American label as a leader wasn't recorded until he was in his seventies, but he takes full advantage of this long overdue opportunity. With the capable rhythm section of bassist Ray Drummond and Grady Tate, Wyands burns through "As Long as There's Music" and gives "Stairway to the Stars" a lush lyrical treatment. But he also explores overlooked gems, such as Tadd Dameron's lively "Focus," as well as reviving Hoagy Carmichael's "Ivy" with a snappy samba arrangement and tackling "With the Wind and the Rain in Your Hair" (intriguingly, a hit for Kay Kyser) as if a full-fledged thunderstorm was on the way. Of course, Wyands makes time for classic jazz compositions too, showcasing Tate's crisp brushwork on a foot-tapping version of Duke Ellington's "Drop Me off in Harlem" and taking a rare opportunity as a solo pianist on the richly textured ballad "What's New." Wyands wrote "West 94th Street Funk," a delightful understated blues that makes for a perfect closer. Highly recommended.