Maynard Ferguson: Oleo
A Message from Birdland (Roulette Jazz 0946 3 97447 2 5)
Composed by Sonny Rollins. Arranged by Slide Hampton.
Recorded: New York, June 17, 1959
Rating: 96/100 (learn more)
Some people detest Maynard Ferguson. These are mostly dog-owners whose canines cower whenever Maynard assaults the ozone layer with his stratospheric trumpet. For the rest of us, it's impossible not to stand and salute this flag-waver recorded live at Birdland. Slide Hampton's arrangement is dynamite, and the band's performance is explosive. Dunlop's drums overly dominate the mix, but that's an audio not a musical blemish, which actually increases excitement. As a precaution, have the nurse check your pulse after you listen to this. And please DO NOT download Maynard's "Oleo" to your pooch's iPod. Doggie ears are just too sensitive.
Reviewer: Alan Kurtz