Allan Vaché, clarinet – With Benny in Mind – Arbors Jazz

by | Mar 21, 2007 | Jazz CD Reviews | 0 comments

Allan Vaché, clarinet – With Benny in Mind – Arbors Jazz ARCD 19338 (Circle Surround 5.1), 66 min. **** [Distr by Allegro]:

(Allan Vaché, clarinet; Christian Tamburr, vibes; Vincent Corrao, guitar; John Sheridan, piano; Phil Flanigan, bass; Ed Metz Jr., drums)

Most jazz clarinetists are influenced in at least a small part by the legacy of the great Benny Goodman. (I’ve always leaned more toward his counterpart, Artie Shaw, but never mind.)  Vaché is one of the current crop of top players on the licorice stick. For this delightful album he gathered a group of musicians who all demonstrate a good understanding of Goodman’s pioneering contributions to jazz.  Vibist Tamburr is only 25, but he’s one of those youngsters who has really taken to the classic Goodman world instead of being seduced by hip-hop, house and what have you.

Many of the Goodman hits are here of course, like Seven Come Eleven, Flyin’ Home, and Air Mail Special. How many jazz albums would you find the Ted Lewis standard, The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise on, I ask you?  (My father used to play that on the autoharp with a harmonica holder a la Dylan.)  And on how many jazz albums would you find the liner notes by a former Attorney General of New Jersey?

Finally, how many stereo CDs are still using one of the matrix surround formats: This one employs the latest version of Circle Surround, dubbed “5.1,” and if you don’t have a CS decoder – which you probably don’t – it will do just fine using Dolby ProLogic II.  It’s already good enough to have this great Goodman repertory in stereo instead of mono. But the surround impression is as good as many discrete SACDs. So this proves great fun all’ round!

TrackList: Avalon, Moonglow, Flyin’ Home, Soft Winds, Air Mail Special, Stompin’ at the Savoy, Seven Come Eleven, Body and Soul, Slipped Disc, Smo-o-oth One, Nagasaki, Memories of You, The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise, Goodbye.

 – John Henry

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