Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
|Neal Hefti, Jazz Pops Orchestra|
Genres: Jazz, Pop
This 1962 album was Neal?s last jazz record before he moved on to Hollywood to compose soundtracks, and it was something of a summation of his entire career in jazz arranging, with quotes from his work with Woody Herman an... more »
This 1962 album was Neal?s last jazz record before he moved on to Hollywood to compose soundtracks, and it was something of a summation of his entire career in jazz arranging, with quotes from his work with Woody Herman and Count Basie as well as transpositions of well-known solos to new instruments. Simply put, any Hefti fan is going to LOVE this long out-of-print release; a master at the peak of his powers!
It's about time!
Foo Bird | 11/24/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you are a Hefti fan, this album reissue will bring tears of joy to your eyes!...And lots of repeat listening to your ears! The fidelity is superb.
The arrangements are absolutely perfect. Hefti assembled a big band line-up in the early 60's that was second to none...and put them to work as only HE could. Neal put a new spin on a couple of his classic "Basie" standards that fans will rank right along side of his original arrangements. Also featured are a number of new arrangements to popular tunes from the period. Lots of great vibes and flute work. Absolutely a must own for Hefti fans!...For that matter...A must own for all big band jazz fans!
Five star music in a three star package
Robin Benson | 10/30/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
A pleasant enough Neal Hefti set recorded in 1962 for Reprise. Probably his most famous arrangements, Coral Reef, Li'l Darlin', and Cute, are included with six other contemporary tracks of the time. The orchestra was made up of experienced LA jazz musicians who perform their professional best.
Good as the music is I was rather disappointed with the package. The nine tracks only last thirty-two minutes which seems poor value for an LP reissue CD. Collector's Choice have in the past included two LPs on many of their issues or if not at least several bonus tracks. Far better value at seventy minutes and twenty-four tracks on one CD (Collectibles COL-CD-6878) are two Hefti reissues: the 1958 'Pardon My Doo-Wah' and 1956 'Hefti Hot `n Hearty', which includes a wordless vocal of Coral Reef.
Even better is a CD I've been listening to for some time: 'Neal Hefti Sure Thing'. Sixty minutes with twenty-one tracks, sixteen of which are his own compositions. I particularly like it because it includes the eight tracks which were the first ones recorded, in 1951 and 52, for the just started Coral Records and issued on their first LP 'Swingin' on a Coral Reef'. It naturally includes a wonderful Coral Reef. Incidentally this CD on the Spanish Ocium label is also a CD-ROM and includes a biography, discography, photo gallery and some other odds and ends about Mr Hefti.
Another annoyance with the 'Jazz Pops' package is the inlay card which has the back of the original LP cover reduced down to CD size so that the musicians listing is unreadable.
I think Hefti fans deserve a better package than this latest Collector's Choice CD.
Ilia Toumadjanov | Raleigh, NC USA | 12/06/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"Although I'd listen to Coral Reef any time, any day this particular version is a little bit of a disappointment. Most Americans probably don't know that the original Neal Hefti big band version of Coral Reef was used as an intro to the Voice of America Music USA late night program hosted by the legendary Willis Conover. The sound of big bands on our shortwave radios was the most thrilling experience in faraway Tbilisi, Georgia. How Willis Conover came to choose Coral Reef over thousands of other big band compositions remains a mystery to this day, but his choice couldn't have been better. Regrettably, most numbers lack the bouncy sophistication and humor of the Hefti's 1950s big band."