163

Bobby Shew with the Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra: Easy to Love

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Bobby Shew with the Midland Youth Jazz Orchestra: Easy to Love As guest trumpeter Bobby Shew says in his liner notes to Easy to Love - and I certainly won't disagree - "the MYJO is hot!" Bobby adds that the Midlands-based ensemble is "one of the finest youth bands" with which he has ever performed. Again, no argument from this quarter. I've been an enthusiastic partisan since hearing the band's first recording a couple or three years ago (in concert) with alto saxophonist Lanny Morgan. Its second recording is in some respects even more impressive than the first, which was merely spectacular. The band sounds even more together (how can that be?) while the rhythm section, despite the "graduation" of premier drummer Ian Palmer, never skips a beat or drops an accent. Soloists? For players who've only been shaving or driving a short time, nothing short of hearing is believing. As for Shew, he is his usual dazzling self on the eight selections on which he appears (all except "Miracle Mile," "Hot and Sweaty" and "Easy to Love"). Wonderful as he is, however, this would be a superior album even if Bobby had called in sick. The MYJO is that good. Of course, maestro John Ruddick's forces would have had considerable prime solo space to fill, but I'm sure they could have managed. While all the charts are topnotch, a few stand above the rest - Raul Romero's "Baile Indio" and "Tristesse," Ruddick's "Anita" (arranged by Martin Williams), Oregonian Jim Olsen's swinging treatment of Monk's "Straight No Chaser," Herbie Phillips' Latin take on "Body and Soul," and of course Rob McConnell's definitive arrangement of "Easy to Love." But this implies that others may be less than rewarding, which simply isn't true. Everything here shines like newly minted gold. If this near-perfect album doesn't appear on some British Jazz critics' Top 10 lists this year, I will be as mystified as I am disappointed by their lack of awareness.

Track listing: Baile Indio; Getting Sentimental Over You; Tristesse; Miracle Mile; Hot and Sweaty; Love Song; Anita; Straight No Chaser; To Say Goodbye; Body and Soul; Easy to Love (66:06).

Collective personnel: Gina Clatworthy, Richard Williams, Allison Neale, Andy Shillingford, alto saxophone; Martin Williams, Adrian Kelley, tenor saxophone; Daniel Meredith, tenor/baritone saxophone; Simon Meredith, baritone saxophone; Kevin Harcourt, Lyndley Horton, Chris Storr, Stephen Harcourt, Anthony Jones, John Ruddick Jr., Colin Crook, Dave Smith, trumpet; Ashley Horton, Carl Sanders, Andy Wood, David Siviter, Paul Boden, trombone; Simon Hall, Jonathan Warburton, bass trombone; Jo Ruddick, Chris Egan, piano; Richard Jones, bass; Eric Ford, David Wilkes, drums; Chris Hooper, guitar; Steven Socci, percussion. John Ruddick, musical director.


Title: Easy to Love | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: MYJO


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Saluting Sgt. Pepper CD/LP/Track Review Saluting Sgt. Pepper
by Karl Ackermann
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Thick as Thieves CD/LP/Track Review Thick as Thieves
by Jack Bowers
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Dream Within A Dream CD/LP/Track Review Dream Within A Dream
by Ian Patterson
Published: June 22, 2017
Read Live At The High Noon CD/LP/Track Review Live At The High Noon
by Doug Collette
Published: June 22, 2017
Read As It Should Be: Ballads 2 CD/LP/Track Review As It Should Be: Ballads 2
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: June 21, 2017
Read Karoujite CD/LP/Track Review Karoujite
by John Eyles
Published: June 21, 2017
Read "Nessuno" CD/LP/Track Review Nessuno
by Karl Ackermann
Published: December 30, 2016
Read "Make The Changes" CD/LP/Track Review Make The Changes
by Karl Ackermann
Published: September 12, 2016
Read "2468 West Grand Boulevard" CD/LP/Track Review 2468 West Grand Boulevard
by Rob Rosenblum
Published: December 27, 2016
Read "Which Craft?" CD/LP/Track Review Which Craft?
by Ian Patterson
Published: December 28, 2016
Read "Jersey" CD/LP/Track Review Jersey
by Hrayr Attarian
Published: July 9, 2016
Read "Rímur" CD/LP/Track Review Rímur
by Henning Bolte
Published: March 1, 2017

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.