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ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

The Rodger Fox Big Band: Plays New Zealand

Read "Plays New Zealand" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Although trombonist Rodger Fox has somehow managed to keep New Zealand's finest big band alive and swinging for more than four decades, the band has never devoted an entire album to music written and arranged by New Zealanders--until now. That's not to say that Fox and the band have ignored music from their home country. Over ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Erna Ferry: Wild About You

Read "Wild About You" reviewed by Jack Bowers

If singer Erna Ferry's name is new to you, that's more than likely because she's a New Zealander who makes her home in that lovely faraway island nation in the southwestern Pacific Ocean, east of Australia across the Tasman Sea. Ferry, a jazz singer with bluesy overtones, is backed on Wild About You by the exemplary ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Chris Cain: King of the Blues

Read "King of the Blues" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Presumably, the title of singer / guitarist Chris Cain's new CD, King of the Blues, refers not to Cain himself but to one of his idols, the legendary bluesman B.B. King, who passed away in May 2015. Cain, who was born and raised in San Jose, CA, attended his first B.B. King concert at age three, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Michael Houstoun with the Rodger Fox Big Band: Concerti

Read "Concerti" reviewed by Jack Bowers

There is a saying about “the best of both possible worlds," an adage that springs immediately to mind when listening to Concerti, a remarkable collaboration between classical pianist Michael Houstoun and trombonist Rodger Fox's superb big band from Wellington, New Zealand. The captivating program consists of four extended works, two by American pianist / composer Bill ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

New Zealand School of Music Big Band: Too Cool

Read "Too Cool" reviewed by Jack Bowers

While the latest CD by the splendid New Zealand School of Music Big Band may not be Too Cool, it's definitely chilly enough to demand that the average listener wear earmuffs while sampling its frigid yet at the same time fiery bill of fare. Blues got you down? A few bars of the orchestra's sunny curtain-raiser, ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

New Zealand School of Music Big Band: Awright Awright

Read "Awright Awright" reviewed by Jack Bowers

It's hard to believe this is a school band, no matter what the level. Music director Rodger Fox, a seasoned trombonist who leads his own play-for-pay band, must be extremely pleased and proud of what his students at the New Zealand School of Music in Wellington have accomplished, as their third album, Awright Awright, is superlative ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEWS

Rodger Fox Wellington Jazz Orchestra: The Capitol Sessions

Read "The Capitol Sessions" reviewed by Jack Bowers

In July 2012, trombonist Rodger Fox brought his Wellington Jazz Orchestra all the way from New Zealand to Los Angeles to record at the famed Capitol Studios, thus confirming Fox's confidence in the ensemble--one doesn't undertake a trip like that accompanied by musicians whose talents are less than exemplary--while producing an album that is superlative from ...

Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names

Read "Pointing Fingers... And Naming Names" reviewed by Jack Bowers

As the countdown continues toward the last Big Band Report in June, the time has come to point fingers and name names--in other words, to compile a short list of contemporary jazz musicians who have risen above the norm to help make life more pleasurable for one devoted listener. These are, mind you, personal choices, and ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND CARAVAN

Cecilia Coleman Big Band / Phil Norman Tentet / UNT One O'Clock Lab Band

Read "Cecilia Coleman Big Band / Phil Norman Tentet / UNT One O'Clock Lab Band" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Cecilia Coleman Big Band

Oh Boy!

PandaKat Records

2011

Among the many pleasant surprises on Oh Boy!, pianist Cecilia Coleman's maiden voyage as leader of her own big band, perhaps the most eye-opening is that the band had been together for only eight months when the album was recorded by ...

ARTICLE: BIG BAND CARAVAN

Rodger Fox's Wellington Jazz Orchestra / Sammy Nestico-SWR Big Band / Gran Canaria Big Band

Read "Rodger Fox's Wellington Jazz Orchestra / Sammy Nestico-SWR Big Band / Gran Canaria Big Band" reviewed by Jack Bowers

Rodger Fox's Wellington Jazz Orchestra

Journey Home

Tbone Records

2011

Alan Broadbent and Rodger Fox's Wellington Jazz Orchestra: a rendezvous that took many years to bring about and is clearly long overdue--but as the saying goes, better late than never (in this case, much better!). Broadbent, a Grammy-winning composer / arranger ...