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Creepin' With Clark

Clark Terry & Mike Vax

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Album Review

Although Mike Vax is a talented trumpeter and flügelhornist, it's hard not to be upstaged by a guest the caliber of Clark Terry. Fortunately these two men realize that this studio session is not a competition, but instead an old friendship that is focused on producing great music. The supporting cast includes the talented but underappreciated trombonist John Allred, young pianist Reggie Thomas, veteran bassist Rufus Reid, and Terry's regular drummer Sylvia Cuenca. Vax contributed the lively "Royal Street Shuffle," which is driven by Thomas' strong boogie-woogie piano, and the oddly named "Creepin' With Clark," as there's nothing slow-paced about this swinger! Vax's deliberate arrangement of Duke Ellington's "Creole Love Call" opens with just Terry's flügelhorn and Allred's trombone, before Vax adds his muted trumpet as the rest of the group joins in; Terry's following gutbucket muted solo is inspired. Terry's fat-toned flügelhorn is immediately identifiable on his old composition, the upbeat "Serenade to a Bus Seat," which features great solos by the entire group. The two leaders' horns blend beautifully in Terry's "Just a Simple Waltz," and they take turns caressing his rich ballad "Sheba." The tasty dessert at the end of this CD is actually served in two courses. First, Terry's treatment of the late Harry "Sweets" Edison's easygoing "Jive at Five" features him alternating between his matchless scat singing and his muted trumpet. The finale finds Terry alternating between muted trumpet and flügelhorn on his funky "One Foot in the Gutter." Highly recommended.

Customer Reviews

This is GREAT!

Jazz Heaven!....Two jazz trumpet legends provide a treat! Clark Terry is a master!...and Mike Vax can blow the horn 'man'! The supporting group is kickin' also!!....If you dig' the 'authentic' jazz sound, get this...and check out "Royal Street Shuffle"!...scatting from Mike Vax?!....Clark and Mike are dynamite!

Biography

Born: December 14, 1920 in St. Louis, MO

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s, '00s

Possessor of the happiest sound in jazz, flügelhornist Clark Terry always plays music that is exuberant, swinging, and fun. A brilliant (and very distinctive) soloist, C.T. gained fame for his "Mumbles" vocals (which started as a satire of the less intelligible ancient blues singers) and is also an enthusiastic educator. He gained early experience playing trumpet in the viable St. Louis jazz scene of the early '40s (where he was an inspiration for Miles Davis) and, after performing in a Navy band...
Full Bio

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