289

Mike Vax Big Band: I Remember You

Jack Bowers By

Sign in to view read count
Mike Vax Big Band: I Remember You This affectionate tribute to Stan Kenton (and to composer/arranger Johnny Richards and trombonist Dick Shearer) by trumpeter Mike Vax and the "Kenton Alumni Band" was recorded onstage at the 25th anniversary Morningside (Iowa) College Jazz Festival in February 1997. It has the reverberant ambiance of a concert date too, which is especially noticeable in the sound of Gary Hobbs's drums, John Akai's percussion and levels that vary among soloists. Putting that aside, the band (15 of whose members played at some time in Kenton's orchestra) is first-class, as is the choice of music, some of which was wholly new to these ears (including the lovely "Eurydice," the last piece written by Richards; another of his later compositions, "Fata Morgana," and Dee Barton's elegant waltz, "The Singing Oyster,"). Also included are John Leubke's lively "Samba da Gamba," Willie Maiden's "A Little Minor Booze," (The 1,000,00th) "Peanut Vendor," Richard Raven's Ted Heath-style arrangement of "Along Came Bill" (from the Broadway musical Showboat), and the standards "You Are So Beautiful," "Makin' Whoopee, "I Remember You" and "Yesterdays," the last two in their classic Bill Holman finery. "Yesterdays," usually performed by Kenton's tenor sax star of the moment (Bill Perkins, Richie Kamuca, Richard Torres), showcases Chuck Carter's growling baritone. "Morgana" is a volcanic Latin chart, reminiscent of those penned by Richards for the album "Cuban Fire!" Nelson Riddle arranged "Makin' Whoopee" to spotlight the bass trombone of George Roberts. "Along Came Bill" features a stratospheric duet between Vax and co-lead trumpet Dennis Noday. Mary Fettig's dancing flute enlivens "Peanut Vendor," and she solos again (on flute and tenor) with Vax, Carter, Hobbs and Akai on the flag-waving finale, "Samba da Gamba," which captures perfectly the incomparable spirit of Kenton. Another 70 minutes well spent.

Track listing: A Little Minor Booze; Europa; Eurydice; I Remember You; You Are So Beautiful; The Singing Oyster; Yesterdays; Fata Morgana; Makin; Whoopee; Peanut Vendor; Along Came Bill; Samba da Gamba (70:12).


Personnel:

Mike Vax, trumpet, leader; Steve Wilkerson, alto sax; Chuck Carter, alto, baritone sax; Mary Fettig, tenor sax, flute; Roy Reynolds, tenor sax; Joel Kaye, baritone, bass sax; Dennis Noday, Mike Gurciullo, Steve Campos, Jim Oatts, trumpet; Roy Wiegand, Conrad Herwig, Denny Brunk, trombone; Bill Hartman, George Roberts, bass trombone; Don Hass, piano; Jim Widner, bass; John Akai, percussion; Gary Hobbs, drums. French horns (from the Sioux City Symphony Orchestra) Ilan Adar, Jane Berger, Mike Berger, Stephanie Irish, Clarence Riley.

Title: I Remember You | Year Released: 1998 | Record Label: Master Communications Group


Tags

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Hope CD/LP/Track Review Hope
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 21, 2017
Read Day After Day CD/LP/Track Review Day After Day
by John Eyles
Published: July 21, 2017
Read We Know Not What We Do CD/LP/Track Review We Know Not What We Do
by Glenn Astarita
Published: July 21, 2017
Read Slade Alive! CD/LP/Track Review Slade Alive!
by C. Michael Bailey
Published: July 21, 2017
Read The Better Angels of Our Nature CD/LP/Track Review The Better Angels of Our Nature
by Karl Ackermann
Published: July 20, 2017
Read What Brought You Here? CD/LP/Track Review What Brought You Here?
by Troy Dostert
Published: July 20, 2017
Read "Flux" CD/LP/Track Review Flux
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: August 18, 2016
Read "Invisible Hand" CD/LP/Track Review Invisible Hand
by Karl Ackermann
Published: February 9, 2017
Read "Hallways" CD/LP/Track Review Hallways
by Paul Rauch
Published: June 24, 2017
Read "Through The Glass" CD/LP/Track Review Through The Glass
by Nicola Negri
Published: March 25, 2017
Read "Beatrice" CD/LP/Track Review Beatrice
by Jack Bowers
Published: May 13, 2017
Read "Sunkissed" CD/LP/Track Review Sunkissed
by Jeff Winbush
Published: September 11, 2016

Support All About Jazz: MAKE A PURCHASE  

Support our sponsor

Upgrade Today!

Musician? Boost your visibility at All About Jazz and drive traffic to your website with our Premium Profile service.

Donate!