Doug MacDonald has assembled a most interesting group of musicians with instruments not often heard in Jazz ensembles. This eclectic mix was obviously well thought out by MacDonald because the grouping blended beautifully.
The swing or bop tunes were given a new treatment in sound and the ballads had a haunting quality, and were the perfect vehicle to showcase the sound that the leader (I'm sure) had in mind.
There were more chops on that bandstand than in Schwartz's Meat Market. Jack Coan and Bob Summers the two Trumpets were blazing a fiery musical trail, It was Dizzy's business being taken care of by these superb players.
Sammy Kahn's "It's You Or No One" featured blistering solos by Coan and Summers, Doug MacDonald's Guitar wove a magic spell as he swung like a porch glider in a hurricane.
"T and G"..(Trumpet and Guitar)...Straight ahead jazz at it's best as the Guitar of the leader and Summer's Trumpet were case studies in musicianship. Very hip.
Basie's "9:20 Special" paid homage to "Base" and MacDonald rides again in his brilliant soliloquy.
"Leavin' Lenox" was bright and breezy, Reichenbach's Tuba led things off followed by some good old call and answer between the sections. Ira Nepus's Trombone smoothly soloed in his patented style. Summer's Flugelhorn was refulgent in its beauty.
Spazio was packed and jammed by jazz buffs from all over, it was elbow to elbow with very hip folks, which is always exciting to see, it reassures one that our music is loved and appreciated.
Like an August night in New Orleans the music was both hot and sweet..and highly desirable.
Doug MacDonald has put together a new sound with the old swing and it works, struts and sashays with a confidence bred of great arrangements and the best musicians in the business.