Hedges' Sextet Really Swings
Steve Emerine | Tucson, AZ United States | 12/11/2002
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Chuck Hedges leads a fine sextet for 75 minutes of swing on his third CD for the Arbors label, and it will remind you of another clarinetist who had great success with small groups as well as big bands. But this is no Benny Goodman cover recording. Hedges. vibraphonist Bucky Buckwalter, guitarist Dave Sullivan, pianist Gary Meisner, bassist Mike Britz and drummer Andy LoDuca are definitely 21st century practitioners of classic swing, and they stretch well beyond the three-minute constraints the Goodman sextet faced when it recorded at 78 rpm. Highlights include a nine-plus-minute version of "I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance With You," six minutes of "Midnight Sun," "Samba These Days" (a Latin version of "Some of These Days") and a Hedges-Sullivan showcase on "I Let a Song Go Out of My Heart." Hedges is outstanding throughout, and as you listen, you'll look several times for the name of the vibes player. It's Buckwalter. He's terrific, and so is this CD."