The title of this session refers to the fact that Vaché's quartet is "revisiting" the music of the classic Sidney Bechet/Muggsy Spanier recordings without "recreating" it (which would have been not only foolish but unnecessary). Only two songs put on wax by Bechet/Spanier ("China Boy," "Four or Five Times") are included along with one of Bechet's compositions ("Promenade aux Champs-Elysées") and another by Spanier ("Relaxin' at the Touro"). As with the rest of this warm tribute to two acknowledged masters of early-years Jazz, the music recalls their spirit without slavishly imitating their styles or idiosyncrasies. Although Vaché and cornetist David Jones are somewhat more modern in conception (which is to be expected), it works. There to help ensure that it does are the levelheaded guitarist Bob Leary (who also sings appealingly on Clancy Hayes's novelty tune, "She's Just Perfect for Me") and the adaptable bassist Phil Flanigan who's at home in any milieu from trad to post-bop. Perhaps the most striking aspect of Vaché and Jones is the clear, bell-like tone that each one coaxes from his horn, which certainly makes listening easier and more pleasurable, especially as they must carry the lion's share of the melodic load. Jones employs the harmon mute only on "Touro" and the opening chorus of "China Boy," and lays out of "Louisiana Fairytale," which Vaché takes on a Bechet-like ride. Sure, it's all been done before, and one may understandably prefer to revisit the originals whenever possible, but Vaché and his bandmates have nevertheless fashioned an earnest homage within the framework of the Bechet/Spanier legacy that is well worth hearing too.
Track Listing: That Da Da Strain; Liza; Louisiana Fairytale; Promenade aux Champs-Elys
I was first exposed to jazz in 1961 (at age 10) when I was in a shopping arcade in Southport, England with my parents. I fell in love with the music playing over the PA system; Take Five by the Dave Brubeck Quartet
I was first exposed to jazz in 1961 (at age 10) when I was in a shopping arcade in Southport, England with my parents. I fell in love with the music playing over the PA system; Take Five by the Dave Brubeck Quartet. After going through Rock 'n Roll, the Beatles and Heavy Metal/Hard Rock phases over the next eight or so years, I finally bought my first jazz album; We're All Together Again for the First Time by Dave Brubeck, Paul Desmond and Gerry Mulligan. I was hooked on jazz, and still am 40+ years later.
I moved from England to the USA in 2002, and founded the Brookfield Jazz Society in 2005.
I became editor of the quarterly IAJRC Journalin 2012. The magazine goes to the worldwide membership of the IAJRC (International Association of Jazz Record Collectors) and many major libraries and educational establishments around the world.
As well as being the editor of the IAJRC Journal, I write about jazz and review CDs, vinyl, DVDs and books on jazz.
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