Manhattan Minuet: The Beau Hunks Sextette Plays the Music of Raymond Scott
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Manhattan Minuet - The Beau Hunks Sextette Play Raymond Scott
Raymond Scott was the master of Bugs Bunny-bent musical mosaics. His catchy, kittenish tunes charted a demolition derby of hairpin turns, abrupt tempo shifts, and crazy scales. Composer, bandleader, inventor -- Scott's visionary ideas foreshadowed 21st century music. Manhattan Minuet is a follow-up to Celebration on the Planet Mars by the Beau Hunks Sextette, as the band recreates 14 more "novelty-jazz" classics by the Raymond Scott Quintette (originally recorded 1937-39). This album was deliberately NOT entitled "Vol. 2," because it is every bit as enjoyable as the first collection. Some melodies were adapted by Scott from semi-classical sources, but all are rendered faithful to his mischievous, driving, tongue-in-cheek style. Manhattan Minuet was produced by head Hunk Gert-Jan Blom, and the arrangements were transcribed from original source recordings. The CD booklet features liner notes by Scott expert Irwin Chusid, and colorful graphics by noted Chicago-based illustrator Chris Ware. The booklet includes a special introduction by Scott fan Elvis Costello (below). - - - - - - - AN INTRODUCTION BY ELVIS COSTELLO July 1996 I first saw the Beau Hunks Sextette in 1995 at the London South Bank Centre's Meltdown Festival, of which I was Artistic Director. I had very much wanted to present some of Raymond Scott's music during the season and had been told that a group out of Amsterdam were my only men. In two late night concerts, they thrilled, scared and enchanted an audience that was certainly curious but in some cases unfamiliar with this wonderful music. This is surely the beauty of the group: to faithfully bring music from hidden corners and make it part of our lives. No dusty scholarship! Hear how they swing! One of my fondest memories of that busy and involving week was watching Raymond's widow, Mitzi Scott, as she laughed and then dabbed her eyes in the semi-darkness while the Beau Hunks Sextette brought her husband's music to life onstage. I hope it is a joy to know that the world is richer for having both her husband's original recordings and the Beau Hunks Sextette on disc.