Kenny Lavender goes full contact big band with Conscious Journey Part 1 &2
Brent Black / www.criticaljazz.com
Have you heard? Big band is back...Trumpet player, composer, arranger and vocalist Kenny Lavender is set to drop a two disc set of standards and originals and claim a well deserved spot as a rising star in the field. An auspicious debut that showcases an artist with mad skills and a 17 piece big band comprised of some A list talent out of the jazz mecca that is New York.
Vocal big band...never really been a big fan due largely to the predictability. How many times can you hear "Fly Me To The Moon" and not be ready to go just to get away from the music? This is where Lavender excels as his original compositions bring a far more contemporary swing to the party as compared to some of his contemporaries. In short, Kenny Lavender makes big band sexy again. Three covers, eclectic and arranged well include "Caravan" along with "I Could Write A Book" and "Una Mas."
Original compositions such as "9th Ave. Swag" as well as "As I Close My Eyes" and "Clark's Bark" pull from inspirational voices including Harry Connick Jr. and Clark Terry. Current the beast of Broadway as one of the most in demand trumpet players, Kenny Lavender is about to take that next big step. The natural evolution of an artist is a wonderful thing!
Tracks: Velocity, As I Close My Eyes, Beauty In A Kiss, Down In Nola, 9th Ave. Swag, Flow Through Me, Caravan, I Could Write A Book, Happiness, Clark's Bark, Una Mas.
Personnel: Kenny Lavender: Trumpet, Flugel, Vocals; Trumpet / Flugel - John Chudoba, Bob Milikan, Brian Parechi, Scott Wendholt; Trombones - Nathan Mayland, Alan Ferbre, Michael Boscarino, Joe Barati; Reeds - Nathan Childers, Alejandro Aviles, Jason Rigby, Kurt Bacher, Frank Basile; Piano: Rick Germanson; Acoustic / Electric Bass: Phil Palombi; Drums: Andy Watson.