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The Wednesday Night Pizza Band

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Album Review

When you put in an order for pizza at Paisanos in Rockville, MD, not only can you order special toppings, but special music as well, at least on Wednesday night. That's the night when James Bazen and his 18-piece big band show up to entertain the folks while they are munching on their pies. These days, a big band has to take the gigs when they come irrespective of their venue. And like pizza toppings, the band offers a wide variety of music. The band's book is not limited to standard swing pieces, but offers works by Charlie Parker, Stan Kenton, Chick Corea, some original Bazen, contemporary material, and even a Celtic ditty or two. With this kind of play list, the patrons at Paisanos must have sophisticated, eclectic musical tastes. Most of the arrangements are Bazen's, and given the different types of music he had his band perform, the arranging chore can be a challenge. But Bazen carries it off well with charts that highlight ensemble and section playing, as well as provide enough room for his soloists to carry through on their own ideas. There's excellent solo work by Jerry O'Sullivan on trombone on "Nothin' Doin," Mike Davis on flügelhorn on "A Felicidade," Jesse Meman on tenor on "The Irish Washer Chic," as well as leader Bazen on flute and sax on a few cuts. Patty McKay offers some fine singing on "One for My Baby." Unfortunately, at times her voice fades as if she's singing in a room down the hall from the rest of the band. But this is a minor inconvenience on what otherwise is a fine big band session Recommended.

The Wednesday Night Pizza Band, The James Bazen Big Band
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  • 8,99 €
  • Genres: Jazz, Music, New Age
  • Released: 08 April 2002

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