Jazz Professional               

CD Review

The SWR Big Band

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(CK Records CK00601)

A Night In Tunisia, Take The A-Train, Once Upon A Summertime, MacArthur Park, Lush Life, Caravan, Oleo, Broadway, Just One Of Those Things, Well You Needn't, Where Or When, Somewhere .....

Soloists: Chet Baker, Buddy Tate, Maynard Ferguson, Barney Kessel, Don Ellis, Albert Mangelsdorff, Arturo Sandoval, Buddy de Franco, Frank Foster, Bob Mintzer, Herb Geller, Jean Toots Thielemans, Charly Antolini, Ack van Rooyen, Frank Rosolino, Clark Terry, Phil Woods, Rob McConnell, Kai Winding ...(more)

Arrangers: Rob McConnell, Ralph Burns, Kai Winding, Manny Albam, Slide Hampton, Bob Mintzer, Phil Woods, Frank Foster, Don Ellis, Tony Scott, Bill Holman, Ernie Wilkins, Don Sebesky... (more)
About 160 minutes of music

The Big Band of the SWR radio station in Stuttgart celebrated its 50th Anniversary in 2001 by releasing this 2-CD package, recorded over five decades under the leadership of Erwin Erwin Lehn Big Band - click to enlargeLehn. A great number of German and American jazz musicians worked with this band. For several years Ack van Rooyen, Rolf Ericson, Bob Burgess, among others, were regular members.

The albums are superbly played, recorded and packaged, and are a collector's item. The package can be ordered directly from the link above and costs €30.

Several gems are to be found here, among them the Kai Winding and Ack van Rooyen solos on Monobone; Frank Rosolino on Caravan, and the late, great Bobby Burgess on MacArthur Park. Bob had asked me to score this as near as dammit to the Woody Herman version, where he had previously recorded this solo, so I did. You can hear his particular style of staccato phrasing on this, while his influence over the whole band can be felt throughout the score.

The production of this superb package, with its conception and realisation, was carried out by Rudi Reindl and Karl Farrent, both of whom play trumpet in the present band.

Special thanks to Professor Erwin Lehn.