Stan Kenton: Ennui




Stan Kenton and the Innovations Orchestra


Carnegie Hall – 1951 (Hep CD68)

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Stan Kenton (piano),

leading a 40-piece orchestra including Maynard Ferguson (trumpet), Conte Candoli (trumpet), Stu Williamson (trumpet), Bob Fitzpatrick (trombone), Harry Betts (trombone), Bill Russo (trombone), John Graas (French horn), Bud Shank (flute, alto saxophone), Art Pepper (clarinet, alto saxophone), Bob Cooper (oboe, English Horn, tenor saxophone), Don Bagley (bass), Shelly Manne (drums), and 16 strings


Composed by Bill Russo


Recorded: Carnegie Hall, NYC, October 19 or 20, 1951


Rating: 93/100 (learn more)

Kenton took his Innovations in Modern Music concert jazz orchestra on two tours throughout the U.S. Although there were sellout crowds at many of the venues it played, the tour lost a lot of money. Even so, it confirmed Kenton’s belief that audiences would pay to hear modernistic jazz-tinged orchestral music. Many composers were asked to contribute, including a young trombone player/leader who had studied with Lennie Tristano in his hometown of Chicago. William Russo would become a distinguished composer, teacher and writer. "Ennui," one of the earliest modal compositions for jazz orchestra (phrygian to be precise), was described by its composer as a study in a quiet and relaxed mood. Harry Betts is the soloist.

Reviewer: Jeff Sultanof

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