Speak No Evil/Plays and Plays and Plays

Speak No Evil/Plays and Plays and Plays

by Buddy Rich
     
 
This fifth chapter in B.G.O.'s Buddy Rich reissue project contains two mid-'70s albums that are very different from one another in flavor, production, and material. The first of these, Speak No Evil, is one of Rich's experiments. He hired famed Chicago producer, composer, and arranger Richard Evans for the sessions and called his unit, Buddy Rich & the Big Band

Overview

This fifth chapter in B.G.O.'s Buddy Rich reissue project contains two mid-'70s albums that are very different from one another in flavor, production, and material. The first of these, Speak No Evil, is one of Rich's experiments. He hired famed Chicago producer, composer, and arranger Richard Evans for the sessions and called his unit, Buddy Rich & the Big Band Machine. Momentarily taken with the sounds of Creed Taylor's CTI and the emerging jazz-funk of the day, Rich and Evans put their own spin on the music with a stellar band. Some of the soloists in this group were Jon Faddis, Steve Marcus, Kenny Barron (on Fender Rhodes), Lew Soloff, and Ross Traut. The bassist for this date -- on an electric Fender -- was Bob Cranshaw. There was also a trio of backing vocalists on some cuts! The material ranged from Evans' classic title track to covers of the Isley Brothers' "Fight the Power" (a radical, and utterly pleasing, arrangement), the Earth, Wind & Fire nugget "Yearnin' Learnin'," the Pointers' "How Long," "Games People Play," and even a medley of Gino Vanelli tunes in "Storm at Sunup" and "Love Me Now." The sound is tight, in the pocket, and full of mean grooves, intriguing colors and textures, and seriously popping horns. Evans transforms Rich's swinging jazz sound into something that was not only extremely contemporary for the time, but sounds unique today: this date would have been right at home on MPS at the time as well. It's partially the mix, since Rich's drums were mixed as part of the band rather than as as a front instrument. The latter album, Buddy Rich Plays and Plays and Plays, recorded two years later, was a much more straight-ahead big-band date with a group that came to be known as his "Class of '77." It featured a number of arrangers including Bob Mintzer, Sam Nestico, Dick Lieb, Phil Wilson, Lou Marini, and Don Menza. Soloists include Mintzer, Marcus, Steve Khan, Ross Konikoff, and Rick Stepton. Marcus and Mintzer were both Rich veterans, but there were more newcomers; all of whom were capable, hard swinging players. In other words, no weak links. Recorded live in the studio by Norman Schwartz, the session features excellent arrangements and performances of Thelonious Monk's "Round About Midnight" and Billy Strayhorn's "Lush Life," along with new compositions by Mintzer, Menza, and Nestico. The mix has Rich's drums way up in the mix and as was traditional, pushing the band from the front end. This date will be far more satisfying to those whose tastes run toward standard progressive big-band material, but it's Speak No Evil that is easily the more exciting of the two albums included here.

Product Details

Release Date:
11/09/2010
Label:
Bgo - Beat Goes On
UPC:
5017261209627
catalogNumber:
6120962

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Buddy Rich   Primary Artist,Drums,Soloist
Gwen Guthrie   Vocals
Jon Faddis   Trumpet,Soloist
Steve Khan   Guitar,Soloist
Bob Mintzer   Flute,Tenor Saxophone,Soloist
Lew Soloff   Trumpet,Soloist
Ross Traut   Guitar,Soloist
Howard Johnson   Tuba
Steve Marcus   Saxophone,Soprano Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone,Soloist
Danny Moore   Trumpet,Soloist
Rhetta Hughes   Vocals
Turk Mauro   Baritone Saxophone,Soloist
Bob Cranshaw   Bass
Wayne Andre   Trombone,Soloist
Kenny Barron   Electric Piano,Soloist
Errol Crusher Bennett   Percussion,Conga
David Boyle   Bass Trombone
Vivian Cherry   Vocals
Joe Farrell   Tenor Saxophone,Soloist
Alan Gauvin   Saxophone
Lani Groves   Vocals
Morris Jennings   Percussion,Drums
Barry Kiener   Keyboards
Ross Konikoff   Trumpet,Soloist
Will Lee   Bass
Dean Palanzo   Saxophone
Victor Paz   Trumpet
Dean Pratt   Trumpet,Soloist
Joshua Rich   Guitar
Janice Robinson   Trombone
Clinton Sharman   Trombone
Rick Stepton   Trombone,Bass Trombone,Soloist
David Tofani   Alto Saxophone,Soloist
Mauro Turso   Saxophone
Lonnie Groves   Vocals
Dave Taylor   Trombone
David Stahl   Trumpet
Josh Brown   Vocals
Robert Mintzer   Saxophone
Jonathan Burr   Bass
Jerry Dodgian   Alto Saxophone,Soloist
Tom Malone   Trombone,Soloist
John Marshall   Trumpet,Soloist

Technical Credits

Don Menza   Arranger,Composer
Bob Mintzer   Arranger
Phil Wilson   Arranger
Richard Evans   Arranger,Producer
Keith Grant   Engineer
Barry Kiener   Arranger
Dick Lieb   Arranger
Lou Marini   Arranger
Thelonious Monk   Composer
Mike Moran   Engineer
Gus Mossler   Remixing
Sammy Nestico   Arranger
Norman Schwartz   Producer
Billy Strayhorn   Composer
Bill Traut   Producer
Mort Goode   Liner Notes
John Tobler   Liner Notes
Pat Martin   Engineer
Acy Lehman   Art Direction
Vanelli   Composer
Stanislaw Fernandes   Cover Art
Dick Smith   Art Direction
Nestico   Composer
Brecker   Composer

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