2009. január 7., szerda

Tom Talbert Orchestra - Duke's Domain



01 - Night Moods
02 - Autumnal
03 - Down Stage Strut
04 - Ko-Ko
05 - Chelsea Bridge
06 - Someone
07 - Lotus Blossom
08 - A Backward Glance
09 - Bojangles
10 - Ellington Group
11 - Snibor
12 - Take The A Rtain
13 - After All

Veteran band leader and arranger Tom Talbert-produced Duke's Domain is not, as the title would imply, just one more compilation of Ellington songs for at least two reasons. First, Talbert defines "Duke's Domain" to encompass Billy Strayhorn's work. Second, Duke's arena has been expanded to make room for some of Talbert's compositions which honor Ellington. Thus, the title tune and first track, is an Ellington-like structured suite written by Talbert, subtitled "My Appreciation." The Talbert pen also honors Strayhorn with "A Backward Glance (A Wave to Strayhorn)." All music on the album is arranged by Talbert and expertly and entertainingly played by an outstanding group of West Coast (mostly) studio musicians. Talbert's arrangements reflect his association early in his career with the orchestras of Claude Thornhill and Stan Kenton. His Kenton experience is most evident on "Duke's Domain" while Thornhill's influence is heard with the voicings on Strayhorn's "Chelsea Bridge." There Suzette Moriarty's pure-toned french horn weaves in and out with Lee Callet's clarinet, a signature of the Thornhill Orchestras of the 1950's, when Talbert was with him. Gary Foster's alto saxophone is put to good use, especially on Strayhorn's After All which was composed in 1941. One of Strayhorn's more creative periods, this was when he produced such classics as "Chelsea Bridge," "Rain Check" and "Passion Flower." Providing an opportunity for all the excellent musicians to solo on this album wasn't possible. But those who got the chance made the most of it. There's Moriarty's french horn and Callet's clarinet once again uniting on "In a Sentimental Mood," Don Shelton's alto sax, with Talbert's piano, on "Bojangles," Tom Garvin's piano on "Snibor," Bob Hardaway's' tenor sax and Don Shelton's clarinet on "Lotus Blossom" to mention a few. (This is the same Don Shelton who was a member of the singing group, the Hi-Lo's). Duke's Domain is not a copy cat of Ellington-Strayhorn arrangements of their own material, but Talbert's admiring and credible interpretation of this classic music, aided and abetted by musicians of similar bent.

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