How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Trumpet/flugelhorn player George Graham brings to this session a long and distinguished career working in the film and TV studios membership in the Bob Florence and Tom Kubis bands. He still works with the Kubis outfit. Both Florence and Kubis have important roles on this Graham's second album as a leader. Florence is at the piano and Kubis solos on alto and soprano saxophone on seven of the cuts. But most importantly, Kubis uses his "electric orchestra" to create the musical backdrop for Graham's sweet solos. This orchestral feel is the result of a synthesizer that creates strings, drums and other sounds. The result is that the listener gets the feeling there are many musicians in the studio when really there are only six real live players on the set. The rest are given birth electronically.
>P>If it weren't for Graham's jazz background, this album would fall into the easy listening or smooth jazz category. It's all very pretty, there is little here that's innovative or improvisional, except of course, for the means used to originate much of the music. As for the real players, Calabria McChesney adds a romantic violin to "I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face" and Cathy del Russo's English Horn embellishes "Willow Weep for Me". Kubis' contributions have been mentioned and the Florence piano holds up its end on such cuts as "That's All"
Given Graham's virtuosity, I wish I could be more enthusiastic about this album of mostly well known ballads. It doesn't quite reach the level of Bobby Hackett's work with Jackie Gleason. The best one can say is that it makes very pretty but unintrusive music for reading or dinner. Visit Graham on the Internet at www.trumpetgeorge.com.
Track Listing: How about Me?; What's New?; But Beautiful; Day by Day; Willow Weep for Me; Didn't We?; Here's That Rainy Day; I've Grown Accustomed to Her Face; You Go to My Head; A Foggy Day; The Summer Knows; Meet Mrs. Banning; Star Eyes; That's All
Personnel: George Graham - Trumpet; Tom Kubis - Soprano & Alto Sax; Bob Florence - Piano; Bob McChesney - Trombone; Calabria McChesney - Violin; Catherine Del Russo - English Horn