The Knoxville Jazz Orchestra: The Music of Donald Brown
The significant performing and composing credentials notwithstanding, Mr. Brown's music is neither sufficiently sturdy nor diverse to sustain an entire album. This means that the Knoxville Orch. is put at a disadvantage. Having to perform just one style of music by the same composer limits their opportunity to show their full potential. Certainly, there are some good cuts here which allow members to stretch out. "Strangers in Paradise" (not the tune from Kismet) is a pleasant low key piece of music with some special guitar playing by Mark Boling and restrained piano by Bill Swann. There‘s excellent drumming underpinning good ensemble work on "Episode from a Village Dance". But after a few tracks, a feeling of ennui creeps in because there's too little variation in the music. This is a good group of musicians and hopefully the play list from the next album will allow them to show off their performing capabilities.
Track Listing: Used to Think She Was Quiet; Strangers in Paradise; Waltz for Monk; Back Down in Lu Easy Anna; The Thing about Harold Mabern; Shade Street; Dearest Emily; Episode from a Village Dance
Personnel: Vance Thompson - Director/Trumpet; Mark Tucker - Alto & Soprano Sax/Flute; David King - Alto Sax/Flute; Bill Scarlett - Tenor & Soprano Sax/Clarinet; Jimmy Mann - Tenor Sax/Clarinet; Tom Johnson - Baritone Sax/Bass Clarinet; Michael Wyatt, Stewart Cox, Thomas Heflin, Tom Fox, Michael Spirko - Trumpet; Don Hough, Tom Lundberg, Darrell Wyatt, Brad McDougall - Trombone; Mark Bolling - Guitar; Bill Swann - Piano; Rusty Holloway - Bass; Keith Brown - Drums
Record Label: KJO
Style: Big Band