David Franklin

David’s Contributions

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April 2007    Big Bands

Excalibur
The Steve Wiest Big Band

Steve Wiest’s jazz education includes a master’s degree from the University of North Texas and five years as arranger and featured trombonist with Maynard Ferguson. On his debut album as a leader, he demonstrates his mastery of his instrument as well as...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Up From the Skies: Music of Jim McNeely
The Vanguard Jazz Orchestra

In addition to his many other duties, Jim McNeely has been pianist and composer-in-residence for the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra (born as the Thad Jones-Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra) since his return to the band in 1996. Up From the Skies is the group’s second CD...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Live at El Camino College
The Buddy Collette Big Band

This recording was not released when it was made in 1990 and the original tapes subsequently got destroyed. Backup tapes deteriorated somewhat between then and now, and the apparent result is that one track ends unexpectedly with a quick fade and another...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Dedication Suite
Dr. Big Band & Jim Mcneely

During its more than 40-year existence, the 20-piece DR (Danish Radio) Big Band has proven to be an exceptionally fine jazz orchestra. Its musical directors have included, among others, Thad Jones and Bob Brookmeyer. Pianist/composer/arranger Jim McNeely...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Lucky to Be Me
Dewey Erney & The Tom Kubis Orchestra

Veteran California vocalist Dewey Erney possesses a fine voice (a little like Mel Tormé’s), sure pitch, a precise sense of timing and excellent taste in his repertoire and delivery. This collection of 15 songs from composers like Duke Ellington, Michel Legrand...

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November 2006    Big Bands

New Horizons
Ryan Haines Big Band

Ryan Haines’ second big-band CD employs a cadre of excellent players from the Washington, D.C., region, many of them affiliated with the area’s fine military jazz ensembles. On a varied mainstream program of Haines originals (plus his elegant arrangement...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Keeping My Composure
Charley Harrison with Jeff Lindberg's Chicago Jazz Orchestra

Charley Harrison has been the guitarist for the Chicago Jazz Orchestra since 1991 when it was known as the Jazz Members Big Band. Harrison has also served as an arranger for the CJO as well as a composer, arranger or orchestrator in other contexts. Keeping...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Taking the Long Way Home
The Bud Shank Big Band

It took Bud Shank 79 years and a day to get to lead a big band. Shank was born on May 27, 1926, and fronted a big band for the first time on May 28, 2005. In the meantime, his alto saxophone had enhanced several famous large bands and innumerable small ones...

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November 2006    Big Bands

Kindred Spirits
Gary Urwin Jazz Orchestra with Bill Watrous and Pete Christlieb

For a fellow who practices law for a living, Gary Urwin is one heck of an arranger. His charts for his third CD, though solidly in the modern-mainstream-big-band tradition, use traditional elements in fresh, imaginative ways, such as ending Wayne Shorter’s...

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November 2006    Big Bands

No Bounds
The Chris Walden Big Band

Although he ended up losing to Dave Holland and Gordon Goodwin, respectively, the German-born composer-arranger Chris Walden was recently nominated for Grammy Awards for best large jazz ensemble album and best instrumental arrangement. No Bounds is the follow...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

Mugshots
Tedd Baker

As the lead tenor saxophonist with the U.S. Air Force’s Airmen of Note, Tedd Baker could be expected to be exceptional, and he is. His big muscular tone and perpetually moving lines produce hard-bop improvisations that grab the listener’s interest and generate...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

Tenor of the Times
Jerry Bergonzi

Folks who know of Jerry Bergonzi only as the successor to Paul Desmond in the Dave Brubeck Quartet could be misled by that credential. In contrast to the light and lyrical altoist, Bergonzi is a fiery tenor player out of the John Coltrane school. And like...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

Just Noodlin'
Paul Carr

Tenorist/sopranoist Paul Carr has been a fixture on the Washington, D.C., area jazz scene for many years. The self-produced Just Noodlin’ is his second album as a leader and his first since 1993. Carr’s frontline companions for the occasion are the fine...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

Richie Cole Meets Art Pepper: A Piece of Jazz History
Richie Cole/Art Pepper

In spite of coming of age a generation apart, altoists Art Pepper and Richie Cole share the common heritage of bebop. Ironically, Cole, the younger man, reflects the influence of bop icon Charlie Parker more directly than his older associate, who adopted...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

How 'Bout Now
Fred Hess Band

For his 11th album as a leader, Denver-based tenorist Fred Hess employed the same excellent sidemen as on his previous two well-received recordings—Ken Filiano on bass, Matt Wilson on drums and Ron Miles on cornet (instead of his usual trumpet), with longtime...

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September 2006    Saxophonics

Dues in Progress
Keith Oxman

If anyone still needs convincing that outstanding jazz players live and work in places other than on the East and West Coasts, they should check out Denver-based Keith Oxman’s latest recording. The tenorist’s sixth album for Colorado’s Capri label features...

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About David Franklin

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