The music played on this album is guaranteed to make you want to grab your significant other and get out on the dance floor. These kind of recordings are rarely made anymore. Veteran trombonist Don Doane leads a sextet of his contemporaries as they are joined by the delicate vocalizing of Leila Percy (called the "canary" on the personnel list). There is more than an hour of music designed to bring back memories for the older crowd and catch the ear of a younger group who yearn for music with melody. The play list is stocked with songs several of which will have listeners saying, "gee, I haven't heard that one for a long time". These oldies but goodies include "I Can't Begin to Tell You" which was the most successful recording of 1945 for Bing Crosby. Recorded with Carmen Cavallaro at the piano, the song rocketed to the top of the Billboard charts, where it remained for 6 weeks. "All I Do Is Dream of You", penned in1934 by Arthur Freed and Nacio Herb Brown, appeared in three separate films, Sadie McKee and two where Debbie Reynolds did the singing honors, Singin' in the Rain and The Affairs of Dobie Gillis. For waltzing there's "When I Lost You". If Samba is your thing, there's the Brazilian "Recado". Other nostalgic cuts include "A Tree in the Meadow" and "It's Magic".
Not all the songs are romantic, sentimental ballads. For those who like to swing, there's a rousing instrumental "Jumping with Symphony Sid", and a bouncing arrangement of Horace Silver's "Sister Sadie". The latter features some fine piano by Gerry Wright and tailgate trombone by Doane. I suspect that this is an arrangement not contemplated by Silver when he wrote this funky tune. But what Doane and group do with it works.
With Doane's Tommy Dorsey-influenced (with a touch of Jack Teagarden) trombone, Joe LaFlamme and Ralph Norris tenors from the Coleman Hawkins school, backed by the strong rhythm of Wright, Al Doane and Paul Jensen and Percy's warbling on the slow stuff, makes this a fun and entertaining album. Recommended.
Personnel: Leila Jane Percy - Vocals*; Don Doane - Trombone; Ralph Norris, Joe LaFlamme - Tenor Saxophone; Gerry Wright - Piano; Al Doane - Bass; Paul Jensen - Drums