This highly enjoyable 1993 CD issue compiles the original six-song Chet Baker Sextet 10" EP as well as the Chet Baker Big Band 12" album. Although these two sessions were held more than two years apart, this was due primarily to an extended European tour during the intervening months and Baker's obvious unavailability stateside. Releasing an entire album under the moniker Chet Baker Big Band is a bit of a misnomer, as only the first four sides actually incorporate an 11-person configuration. The remaining tracks from the long-player feature a slightly smaller nonet configuration. Among the luminaries joining Baker (trumpet) and participating in the big-band arrangements are Art Pepper (alto sax), Bud Shank (alto sax), Phil Urso (tenor sax), and Bobby Timmons (piano).
This isn’t just another oblique or chops based attempt at paying homage to the late, great bassist Jaco Pastorius. Here, Italian acoustic-electric bassist, arranger Maurizio Rolli and his A.M.P. Big Band (along with some special guests), inject heartfelt imagery into the Pastorius songbook. With this release, Rolli focuses on Pastorius' compositional strengths.
1966 was a most illogical time for anyone to try forming a new big band but Buddy Rich beat the odds. This CD reissues the first album by the Buddy Rich Orchestra, augmenting the original Lp program with nine previously unissued performances from the same sessions. The arrangements (eight by Oliver Nelson along with charts by Bill Holman, Phil Wilson, Jay Corre, Don Rader and others) swing, put the emphasis on the ensembles and primarily feature Corre's tenor although trumpeter Bobby Shew, altoist Pete Yellin, pianist John Bunch and guitarist Barry Zweig are also heard from.
The UK's leading big band, The Syd Lawrence Orchestra, were chosen by producer Mike Valentine for his exploration into the sound differences between direct cut vinyl and a multi-track analogue tape recording and mix done of exactly the same event. The album had to be recorded live so he had to choose a selection of music which would be of the perfect length. Valentine chose a recording studio which not only had a superb sounding space, but also an engineer versed in the black art of cutting live vinyl. Ultimately, he chose Air Studios with engineers Jake Jackson and John Webber. The Syd Lawrence Orchestra led by Chris Dean perform music consisting of eight pieces from the big band era, the creations of Glen Miller, Artie Shaw, and Benny Goodman played live at Air Studios. That recording is now available on CD - enjoy!