||Blue Reverie CD (2008) |
Michael Lawson albums Jim Galloway's Wee Big Band has been in existence for 30 years, but surprisingly, Blue Reverie is only its third recording. The orchestra (which, despite its name, is a full-size, 17-piece jazz ensemble) is as swing-oriented as its leader. On Blue Reverie, in addition to a few newer arrangements, vintage charts by Jimmy Mundy, Duke Ellington, Billy Strayhorn, Benny Carter, Buck Clayton, and Chico O'Farrill ("Chicago") have been transcribed from recordings. But rather than re-creations, these live performances sound very much alive, the solos are improvised, and the Jim Galloway Wee Big Band has a musical personality of its own. All but three of the musicians have opportunities to solo, with the standout performances being Gordon Evans' alto on "Isfahan," the swinging ensembles on Benny Carter's "Symphony in Riffs," and the odd, floating Gerry Mulligan arrangement of "If You Were the Only Girl in the World." ~ Scott Yanow
Recorded live in 2006 at Toronto's Montreal Bistro. Blue Reverie is the band's third recording and captures the excitement of a large 16 piece band playing classic songs in the swing tradition in front of an enthusiastic audience. Tracks ...