Kris Berg & the Metroplexity Big Band / Michael Treni Big Band / Millennium Jazz Orchestra
HUJE's vibraphonist, the aptly named Quintin Mallette, is center stage on the venerable "Moody's Mood for Love" (nicely scored by Scott Silbert; and no, Mallette doesn't sing). Muldoon's electric guitar introduces his "Pledge to Micah," an even-tempered ballad on which he and Balbed shimmer. The two are joined out front by Prather and Seppa on the bassist's soft-flowing "Peace of Mind," after which Balbed puts the topping on the cake with a succulent manifesto on Mike Crotty's arrangement of the tasteful "Two for the Road." Irby's enterprising ensemble is first-class by any measure, and in Balbed, Prather, McCoy and Mallette has a quartet of soloists who are as proficient as you'll hear at the university level. Well done, HUJE; next year's almanac can't arrive soon enough.
Tracks and Personnel
This Time / Last Year
Tracks: Softly, As in a Morning Sunrise; Games; This Time / Last Year; Forgotten Thoughts; RU Chicken?; The Gentle Rain; Pah-Dah-Pah-Dah; Night Dreamer; I'm Okay, We're Okay!
Personnel: Kris Berg: leader, composer, arranger, bass; Keith Jourdan: trumpet (1, 3, 4, 6-8); Micah Bell: trumpet; Ken Edwards: trumpet; Jack Evans: trumpet (1, 3, 6, 8); Tyler Mire: trumpet (2, 4, 7, 9); Tim Ishii: alto sax, flute (1-4, 7, 8); Collin Hauser: alto sax, flute (1-4, 6-9); Jeff Robbins: tenor, alto sax, flute; Brian Clancy: tenor sax, flute; Bruce Bohnstengel: alto sax, flute (3, 8, 9); Sarah Roberts: alto sax, flute, bass clarinet (6, 8); Kevin McNerney: baritone sax, tenor sax (6); Michael Burgess: trombone; Chris Seiter: trombone (1-4, 6-9); Simon Willats: trombone (1, 3, 6, 8, 9); Milas Yoes: trombone (2, 4, 7); A. G. Robeson: bass trombone; Kent Ellingson: piano (1-5, 7-9); Roberto Verastegui: piano (6); Tom Burchill: guitar (1, 3-9); Noel Johnston: guitar (2); Stockton Hellbing: drums. Special guests: Wayne Bergeron: trumpet (2, 4, 7); Clay Jenkins: trumpet (1, 3, 8); Delfeayo Marsalis: trombone (1); Chris Vadala: alto flute (6).
Boy's Night Out
Tracks: Something's Coming; Boy's Night Out; Lullaby of Birdland; Strayhorn; In My Quiet Time; What Is the World Coming To?; U.M.M.G.; Here's That Rainy Day.
Personnel: Michael Treni: composer, arranger, leader, trombone; Bob Millikan: trumpet, flugelhorn; Vinnie Cutro: trumpet, flugelhorn; Chris Persad: trumpet, flugelhorn; Bill Ash: trumpet, flugelhorn; Sal Spicola, alto, soprano sax, flute, piccolo, clarinet/ Craig Yaremko, alto sax, flute, alto flute, clarinet; Jerry Bergonzi, tenor, soprano sax; Frank Elmo, tenor sax, alto flute, clarinet; Ken Hitchcock, tenor sax, alto flute, clarinet; Roy Nicolosi: baritone sax, clarinet, bass clarinet; Matt Bilyk: trombone; Bob Ferrel: trombone; Philip Jones: trombone, bass trombone; Charles Blenzig: piano; Takashi Otsuka: bass; Ron Vincent: drums; Rick DeKovessey: percussion; Faina Agranov: violin (5, 8); Minjee Kang: violin (5, 8); Michael Alas: viola (5, 8); Jeffrey Szabo: cello (5, 8).
Tracks: Epoxy; Pretty Pumps; Alliance; Schemer; Humble & Dandy; Papoutsakia; Recovery.
Personnel: Joan Reinders: composer, arranger, conductor; Rini Swinkels: trumpet, flugelhorn; Sander Zweerink: trumpet, flugelhorn; Bert Fransen: trumpet, flugelhorn; Herman Nijkamp: trumpet, flugelhorn; Jan-Willem te Kiefte: trumpet, flugelhorn; Gerlo Hesselink: alto, soprano sax, flute; Gerard Grobben: alto, soprano sax, clarinet; Remco Keijzer: tenor, soprano sax, flute; Martin van der Horst: tenor sax, clarinet; Job Helmers: baritone sax, bass clarinet; Vincent Veneman: trombone; Henri Gerrits: trombone; Jochen Niehaves: trombone; Bauke Kalma: bass trombone, tuba; Dirk Balthaus: piano; Joep Limeij: bass; Klaas van Donkersgoed: drums.
Sharks & Manatees
Tracks: You Don't Know What Love Is: Beauty and the Beast; Souvenir; I Love Bein' Here with You; Sharks & Manatees; Bridge Over Troubled Water; A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square; Nature Boy; You Are So Beautiful; Fantasia on Kang Ding Love Song; Taki Rari; The Nearness of You; Zen and the Art of Samba.
Personnel: Jim Mick: music director; Scott Handler: trumpet; David Froman: trumpet; Doug Barta: trumpet, vocals; Mark Ibsen: trumpet; Dan Johnson: trumpet; Zack Cassell: alto, soprano sax, flute; Tyler Farr: alto sax, flute; Ejric Bernhardt: tenor, soprano sax, flute; Alan Nowicki: tenor sax, clarinet; Mark Halberstadt: baritone sax (1, 2, 4, 5, 7-9, 13); Doug Blease: baritone sax (3, 6, 10-12); Kevin Buchanan: trombone; Greg Hoppe: trombone; Ron Argotsinger: trombone; Jace Van Bradt: bass trombone; Serena Eads: guitar; Gary Dempsey: piano; Jason Malmberg: bass; Alan Aluisi: drums; Suzanne Morrison: vocals.
Ode to Life
Tracks: Blue Minor; On My Good Days; Pure Imagination; Hocus Pocus; Ugly Beauty; Ode to Life; Mist Flower; If Ever You're in My Arms Again; Moody's Mood for Love; Pledge to Micha; Peace of Mind; Two for the Road.