Learn How

Help improve All About Jazz

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. For $20, we'll hide those pesky Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

204

Bob McChesney Quartet: No Laughing Matter - Plays Steve Allen

By

Sign in to view read count
A well respected studio player as well as having recorded with such jazz studded groups as the Phil Norman Tenet and the Bill Watrous and Bob Florence big bands, trombone player Bob McChesney has chosen to honor the compositions of Steve Allen for his maiden album as a leader. This means that there is some good news and some bad news. The good news is that the play list is comprised of tunes which one doesn't hear all that often, with the exception of "Meet Me where They Play the Blues". Given that Allen wrote more than 8500 tunes, finding some that no one else plays is not all that difficult a task. The bad news is that since it is so easy to find Allen melodies that are rarely played the chances are pretty good many aren't all that interesting. Two tunes for which Allen is especially know for, "This Could Be the Start of Something Big" and "Impossible" are not here. But McChesney and his group do as well as they can with what's on the play list. McChesney is appropriately tender and romantic on "This Is Where We Came In". On the one familiar tune, "Meet Me Where They Play the Blues", McChesney starts off in a tailgate gutbucket trombone style before sequing to a slap tongue, staccato mode followed by a high energy piano solo by Matt Harris. This is the albums' top track. More explosive playing is found on a blues tinged "Chittlins".

McChesney has all the technical equipment and uses these skills well. However, limiting an album to the music of Steve Allen doesn't allow him to demonstrate that he has a feel for the music he's playing since much of this music is pretty shallow stuff. Hopefully for his next album, McChesney will come up with a musical agenda of tunes with greater substance, something that he can sink his improvisional teeth into.


Track Listing: Meet Me Where They Play the Blues; Time; Road Rage; Pretty People; Chittlins; Steve's Blues; Cutie Face; Sultry Samba; This Is Where We Came In; Playing the Field

Personnel: Bob McChesney - Trombone; Matt Harris - Piano; Trey Henry - Bass; Dick Weller - Drums

| Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read Binary CD/LP/Track Review Binary
Read Piano Song CD/LP/Track Review Piano Song
Read Tales & Tones CD/LP/Track Review Tales & Tones
Read Elegy CD/LP/Track Review Elegy
Read "Live At Blues Alley" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Blues Alley
Read "Follow The Stick" CD/LP/Track Review Follow The Stick
Read "The Bronx Pyramid" CD/LP/Track Review The Bronx Pyramid
Read "Live at 5e" CD/LP/Track Review Live at 5e
Read "Triangular III" CD/LP/Track Review Triangular III

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Get Jazz Near You via email!

Enjoy the convenience of receiving a comprehensive listing of jazz events in your area every Thursday. It's free!