153

Vaughn Nark: Somethin' Special

Jim Santella By

Sign in to view read count
The high-note trumpet specialist can amaze an audience with his awesome physical strength and stamina, but quite often forgoes expressiveness through his concentration on lofty athletic feats. Vaughn Nark has solid support and a controlled manner in the "stratospheric" register; he finishes "My Funny Valentine" with an "A" above double "C." But it’s a welcome surprise to learn from this, his first major release, that the well-rounded clinician also includes heartfelt expression, swing, and other fundamental elements in his session. Mavens of the trumpet high-note routine include Cat Anderson, Maynard Ferguson, Bill Chase, Dizzy Gillespie and Jon Faddis. Nark is most influenced by Gillespie, dedicates this album to the unique trumpeter/singer, and includes two of the artist’s compositions. A baby boomer and veteran of about 20 years with the U.S. Air Force Airmen Of Note, Nark overdubs his recording by supplying the sounds of a trumpet and trombone section himself.

Dizzy Gillespie’s "Fiesta Mojo" includes some brilliant flute work from Tim Eyermann; the doubled melodic lines between flutist and trumpeter find Nark an octave above. Eyermann’s warm lower-register flute solo is followed by fours with the trumpeter; the latter includes a sample of the flutist’s trademark in-your-face tongued attacks. Nark’s theme of contrasting warm & emotional with high & dry extends through to each of the other performers. Tenor saxophonist Saul Miller’s gentle saxophone solo on Gillespie’s "Tanga" is followed by Nark’s mellow flugelhorn response and acoustic bass spotlights colored by congas and light Latin drum work. Tom Williams’ acoustic bass is featured as well on Benny Carter’s "The Courtship," which again pairs the trumpeter with Miller’s easygoing sound. Peter Fraize, whose day job is Director of Jazz Studies at George Washington University, supplies a dramatic fired-up feature on John Coltrane’s "Impressions." Freddie Hubbard’s "Povo" provides an opportunity for piano and electric guitar to recreate some early 1970s-era electronic funk, while "My Funny Valentine" offers a sample of Eyermann’s firm alto saxophone work in partnership with Nark’s trumpet. The leader sings expressive tales on "My Funny Valentine" and "She Was Too Good to Me," revealing a gentle vocal style not unlike that of Chet Baker. His high-power scatting on "Billie’s Bounce" clearly pays tribute to the memory of Dizzy Gillespie, as does the session’s well-balanced approach to the various sides of a trumpeter’s repertoire. Recommended.


Track Listing: Softly as in a Morning Sunrise; Fiesta Mojo; My Funny Valentine; Tanga; Billie

Personnel: Vaughn Nark- trumpet, flugelhorn, valve trombone, baritone horn, percussion, vocal on "My Funny Valentine" and "She Was Too Good to Me"; Tim Eyermann- alto saxophone on "My Funny Valentine," flute on "Fiesta Mojo"; Peter Fraize- tenor saxophone on "Softly as in a Morning Sunrise" and "Impressions"; Fred Hughes- acoustic piano, keyboards; Keith Killgo- drums; Saul Miller- tenor saxophone; Alfredo Mojica- percussion; Rick Whitehead- acoustic guitar, electric guitar; Tom Williams- acoustic bass, electric bass.

| Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
Wynton Marsalis Wynton Marsalis
trumpet
Sean Jones Sean Jones
trumpet
Al Hirt Al Hirt
trumpet
Arturo Sandoval Arturo Sandoval
trumpet
Gordon Goodwin Gordon Goodwin
composer/conductor
Herb Alpert Herb Alpert
trumpet
Chris Walden Chris Walden
arranger
Doc Severinsen Doc Severinsen
trumpet
Wayne Bergeron Wayne Bergeron
trumpet
Jon Faddis Jon Faddis
trumpet
John La Barbera John La Barbera
composer/conductor

More Articles

Read Over the Rainbow CD/LP/Track Review Over the Rainbow
by Paul Rauch
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Before The Silence CD/LP/Track Review Before The Silence
by John Sharpe
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Process And Reality CD/LP/Track Review Process And Reality
by Mark Corroto
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1 CD/LP/Track Review Masters Legacy Series, Volume 1
by Edward Blanco
Published: February 24, 2017
Read Backlog CD/LP/Track Review Backlog
by Mark F. Turner
Published: February 24, 2017
Read The Picasso Zone CD/LP/Track Review The Picasso Zone
by Franz A. Matzner
Published: February 23, 2017
Read "Fugitive Beauté" CD/LP/Track Review Fugitive Beauté
by Karl Ackermann
Published: October 11, 2016
Read "Songs Of Bacharach And Manzanero" CD/LP/Track Review Songs Of Bacharach And Manzanero
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: December 12, 2016
Read "Surrounded by the Night" CD/LP/Track Review Surrounded by the Night
by Glenn Astarita
Published: May 29, 2016
Read "Strong Tea" CD/LP/Track Review Strong Tea
by Roger Farbey
Published: October 27, 2016
Read "Guitar Stories: Slack Key & Beyond" CD/LP/Track Review Guitar Stories: Slack Key & Beyond
by Mark Sullivan
Published: April 2, 2016
Read "Nakedonia" CD/LP/Track Review Nakedonia
by Nenad Georgievski
Published: August 25, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Sponsor: ECM Records | BUY NOW  

Support our sponsor

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Buy it!