Stan Kenton: Chiapas




Stan Kenton and His Orchestra


Live at Redlands University (Creative World STD-1015)

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Stan Kenton (piano), Mike Vax (trumpet), Dick Shearer (trombone), Warren Gale (trumpet),

Jim Kartchner (trumpet), Dennis Noday (trumpet), Joe Ellis (trumpet), Mike Jamieson (trombone), Fred Carter (trombone), Tom Bridges (bass trombone), Graham Ellis (bass trombone, tuba), Quin Davis (alto saxophone), Richard Torres (tenor saxophone), Norm Smith (tenor saxophone), Willie Maiden (baritone saxophone), Jim Timlin (baritone saxophone), Gary Todd (bass), John Von Ohlen (drums), Efrain Logreira (congas)


Composed by Hank Levy


Recorded: Redlands University, Redlands, CA, August 4 & 5, 1970


Rating: 92/100 (learn more)

Kenton was still on the road -- and still leading an excellent band -- when this was taped during a week-long clinic at a California college. Stan formed his own record label and continued to explore new directions in big band music along with dance gigs, where “Eager Beaver” was still requested. Enamored of the Don Ellis Orchestra’s performance of music in unusual time signatures, Kenton asked one of Ellis’s composers to write for the band. Hank Levy had played baritone saxophone with the old man in 1954, and was on the staff of Towson College in Baltimore, Maryland, when he contributed this composition. The band despised this music at first, but they finally got the hang of it, as this exciting performance shows. Dick Shearer plays the trombone solo, and there are improvisations by Davis and Gale. Levy would contribute quite a number of pieces in a similar vein until 1976. Kenton passed away in 1978.

Reviewer: Jeff Sultanof


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