Zoot Sims: Moonlight in Vermont

Not many swing or bop saxophonists have put the soprano to good use—few if any during the '30s and '40s, when those styles were gestating. However, in the '60s and '70s a few veterans picked up the horn and made good music with it, among them Phil Woods, Jimmy Heath, Dexter Gordon, and Zoot Sims. The latter recorded an especially attractive album of soprano performances in 1973. Sims transported his suave, deftly swinging style from tenor to soprano, lock, stock, and barrel, with great success. On the ballad "Moonlight in Vermont," Sims highlights the horns sweeter qualities. His soprano sound is an extension of his tenor sound—slightly breathy, smooth and effortless, without a hint of the nasal quality that seems to naturally infect the playing of many more modern players. And oh how he swings! It's enough to make one regret that the horn didn't find wider acceptance back in the day. Who knows how the horn would've sounded in the hands of the great swing era saxophonists? Until someone uncovers some long-lost recordings of Lester Young playing the soprano, this is as close as we're likely to get.

May 06, 2009 · 0 comments


Jimmy Bruno: Moonlight In Vermont

Intro like a dream
falling lines, Lucullan chords.
Lucid jazz guitar.

Nimble fingers play
riffs both swift and sensitive.
Bruno on guitar.

Holloway's brushwork is poised and responsive.
Craig's pensive notes shade the scene.
Jimmy excels in focused trio settings.
You'll soon realize he is one of . . .

the best on the globe,
stunning lexis – deep technique.
Maestro of guitar.

One great take of Moonlight in Vermont.

April 17, 2008 · 0 comments


Johnny Smith (featuring Stan Getz): Moonlight in Vermont

No jazz instrumental better evokes unsung lyrics than this magical track. As Johnny Smith's icy fingers strum shimmering chords, we visualize moonlit ski trails winding down a mountainside of freshly fallen snow. In time, spring is sprung, and telegraph cables sing valentines down each bend in the back-country road. Summer summons Stan Getz's incomparable tenor, wafting as serenely as a meadowlark warbling across a gently stirring evening breeze. Finally falls a postcard-perfect autumn, with sycamore leaves floating protectively above wishfully strewn pennies in a crystal-clear stream. We understand Vermont's chief export is romance. Must have something to do with their moonlight.

April 02, 2008 · 0 comments


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