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Bebop Spoken There

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13,530 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 948 of them this year alone and, so far, 112 this month (July 31).

Thursday, April 29, 2021

Album Review: David Larsen - The Mulligan Chronicles

David Larsen (baritone sax); Dave Glenn (trombone); Bill Mays (piano); Dean Johnson (bass); Ron Vincent (drums).

This isn't a recreation of the legendary Mulligan pianoless quartet rather it's the culmination of several years of research by Larsen into the compositional style of Gerry Mulligan. The result shows that the research was well worthwhile with 13 arrangements of some of the late baritone saxist's lesser known compositions - I only knew Walkin' Shoes, Festive Minor and Open Country.

Larsen gets a good sound, maybe slightly warmer than Gerry's dry, cool tone whilst Glenn is also less arid than either Baker or Brookmeyer. In the latter case I suspect this is partly due to the use of a slide as opposed to valve trombone. Another major factor is Mays' piano filling out the ensembles. Mays, incidentally, has some cracking solos.

My reaction after reaching the end of the final track was to start seeking out the original versions but, before I pressed the Spotify button, I changed my mind. Nothing, not even Gerry, was going to top this.

Simply superb, not least because of the rhythm section who, along with Glenn, had all worked with Gerry Mulligan at one time or another and whose input Larsen admits was invaluable. There was also support from Franca Mulligan, Gerry's third wife and there's a piece dedicated to her which is rather beautiful. Lance.

Bandcamp

Walkin' Shoes; Curtains; Festive Minor; Good Neighbour Thelonius; Lonesome Boulevarde; Idol Gossip; Rico Apollo; Open Country; The Flying Scotsman; Out Back of the Barn; Etude for Franca; Ring Aoud a Bright Star; Tauros Moon.

1 comment :

David Larsen said...

Thank you for the fantastic review.

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