Ellyn Rucker, with Laura Newman, Thursday, November 30, at the Mall Exchange, deserves her reputation as the area's premier female jazz pianist. She's at ease and in superb form in virtually any musical setting, as the Colorado International Women's Forum just acknowledged by accepting Rucker into its organization. Rucker is also celebrating the long-awaited release of Nice Work!, a 1989 recording (featuring Spike Robinson) that is finally hitting stores; and her recent series of performances with distinctive saxophonist Newman have shown another side of her winsome talents. When it comes to combining improvisation and contemporary jazz sounds, she has no Denver peer.


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