by Edward Blanco
Knoxville-based Trumpeter, arranger and band leader Vance Thompson formed The Marble City Five quintet over a year ago and when thinking about recording their first album, decided to augment the band by adding a six-piece horn section comprised of some of the city's younger rising talent. The resulting new Knoxville, TN-based group is now known as Five Plus Six and their audacious debut is appropriately titled Such Sweet Thunder, for there are a lot powerful sounds emanating from this light ...read more
by Jack Bowers
For the mathematically challenged, Vance Thompson's Five Plus Six equals eleven. In other words, it's Thompson's working quintet, the Marble City Five, amplified by half a dozen horns. On its debut recording, the Knoxville, TN-based ensemble performs music by Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Thelonious Monk and--brace yourself--country singer Dolly Parton. In fact, Parton's Little Sparrow," the album's longest-playing track at 10:21, lends itself surprisingly well to the jazz idiom, thanks in part to Thompson's engaging chart, as does the Appalachian ...read more
by David A. Orthmann
While earning a Masters of Music degree and then teaching at DePaul University, trumpeter, composer, and arranger Lance Thompson played in rehearsal bands with some of Chicago’s finest young talent. Before moving back to his native Knoxville to teach at the University of Tennessee and reconnect with the local jazz scene, Thompson assembled some of his peers and recorded Among Friends, his first disc as a leader.
Although the music is generally within the wide parameters of hard bop, Thompson ...read more