Ed Palermo: Toads of the Short Forest


Toads of the Short Forest


The Ed Palermo Big Band


The Ed Palermo Big Band Plays the Music of Frank Zappa (Astor Place 4005)

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Ed Palermo (alto sax), Bob Mintzer (tenor sax),

Cliff Lyons, Phil Chester, Chuck Fisher, Jeff Lederer, Al Hunt (reeds); Liesl Whitaker, Jeff Holmes, Jami Dauber, Ronny Buttacavoli (trumpet); Dan Levine, Dale Kirkland (trombone); Jack Schatz (bass trombone), Bob Quaranta (piano), Ted Kooshian (organ), Paul Adamy (electric bass), Ray Marchica (drums)


Arranged by Ed Palermo. Composed by Frank Zappa


Recorded: New York, July 10 & 11, 1996


Rating: 90/100 (learn more)

The next time some sourpuss tells you that the big band is dead . . . whip out your copy of The Ed Palermo Big Band Plays the Music of Frank Zappa. Better yet, just cold-cock the guy and keep your copy of this CD. It's too good to share with the naysayers, plastic people, brain police, San Bernardino police department, and other small-minded weasels who wouldn't appreciate a big band unless it had bubbles floating out from behind the bandstand. Ed Palermo takes this song from Zappa's Weasels Ripped My Flesh (but without also borrowing -- alas! -- the stylish Roy Lichtenstein-esque illustration that distinguished this memorable Mothers' release) and reworks it into a smooth band chart. Bob Mintzer high-steps over the 6/8 rhythm with such grace and ease that soon you're forgetting about weasels and toads, and are ready for the TV dinner by the pool.

Reviewer: Ted Gioia

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