Inventive but controlled trombone by Count Basie veteran, Clarence Banks, stars on "Nancy with the Laughing Face". Then there's a poignant Allison's Flower, composed by Banks to honor her childhood friend one of the four Kent State students who lost their lives to a National Guardsman's bullet during the Vietnam war protests day. "You've Changed", one of the very few slow tempo tunes on the CD, is an album highlight. Enrique Fernandez's alto gives a passionate, mellifluous rendering of this lovely tune without extraneous embellishment.
Banks' group has been recording since 1992, but this is only their 3rd album during those years and their first in five years. It's regrettable that this fine organization can't hook up with a record label to produce a steadier stream of releases. Visit Nancie's web site at www. jazzsingers.com/NancieBanks.
Tracks:BIRD LIVES!; St. Thomas; Jordu#; Waltz for Zweetie*; Anthropology/Surviving on a Riff; Nancy with the Laughing Face#; Allison's Flower*; Oblivion/Oblivious#; You've Changed*; Tolliver's Travels*PersonnelNancie Banks - Vocals/Conductor; Jaclyn Barrero - Vocals; Oliver Von Essen - piano; Michael Max Fleming - Bass; Brian Grice - drums; Tony Barrero, Anibal Martinez, Frank Gordon, James Zollar - Trumpets; John Gordon, Clarence Banks, Aaron Johnson, Jack Jeffers - Trombone; Enrique Fernandez, Alexander McCabe*, Brad Leali# - Alto Saxophone; Marshall McDonald, Neal Sugarman - Tenor Saxophone - Richard Johnson - Baritone Saxophone
Style: Big Band
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