We got things kicked off with Sam calling Benny Goodman's "Air Mail Special."(It's trickier than it sounds on the recording.) Greg chose last week's recording feature, McHugh and Fields' "On the Sunny Side of the Street." Ellington's "Creole Love Call" proved a soulful choice by Jack. We then tried out an arrangement of Lane and Harburg's "Old Devil Moon"--something to work on over a few months, perhaps for the Freedom Jazz Festival. Wes pulled out the melodically tricky but harmonically satisfying "Ceora"by Lee Morgan. Gene changed things up with Lester Young and Buddy Feyne's "Jumpin' with Symphony Sid." Back around the circle to Sam, who introduced most of us to "Sugar"--the one by Stanley Turrentine, not the Archies. Greg thought "Cry Me A River" would be fun, and it was. Next, I called for "Tangerine," a great Mercer/Schertzinger collaboration. Dick joined the group, and had the opportunity to take two: Ahlert and Turk's "Mean to Me," and "How High the Moon," by Lewis and Hamilton. Wes went looking through the book and came up with Kern and Hammerstein's "All the Things You Are"; we even did the intro. Two more from vocalist Dick: "I'm Confessin'" and Ahbez's "Nature Boy." At Sam's request, we gave Thielman and Gimbel's "Bluesette" a whirl. We closed out the afternoon with Dick's choice, the Hoagy Carmichael/Johnny Mercer classic, "Skylark."
This week's choices for recordings you might want to hear.
Greg has a follow-up from last week: "On the Sunny Side of the Street" recorded by Teddy Wilson.
Wes suggests we listen to Dizzy Gillespie performing his original, "Groovin' High." I've included a 1945 Sextet recording, and a 1981 "Dream Band" live version.
Sam is eager to have you listen to George Benson’s 1976 “Affirmation.”
I am a bit partial to Zoot Sims, Oscar Peterson, and Joe Pass. Here they are joined by Grady Tate and George Mraz for "I Got Rhythm."