Dennis Farnon

Caution! Men Swinging

  • AllMusic Rating
    8
  • User Ratings (0)
  • Your Rating

AllMusic Review by

If you're ever going to make just one hard-driving, swinging-like-mad big-band recording, model it after Caution! Men Swinging. That was to be the destiny of Canadian-born Dennis Farnon, who wrote such whimsical material as "Mother Magoo Suite" and arranged for the movies. But on one day in Los Angeles in 1956, he gathered a large group of talented, mostly jazz musicians into a studio and the result was this outstanding big-band album. Originally released in 1956, it has been reissued by RCA Spain on CD -- although the sound on the original RCA Victor LP is fine, if the LP can be located. Each track is a joy, offering its own surprise. Never do the charts allow the music to fall into a rut. The ensemble work is strong and ample time is allowed for soloing: the lyrical trumpet of Don Fagerquist on such tunes as "Lover Come Back to Me," Howard Roberts' guitar on "Spring Will Be a Little Late This Year," well-placed solos by tenorman Ted Nash, and by Jimmy Rowles and Lou Levy, who share the piano chair. Farnon never returned to his jazz idiom, moving instead to film work and arranging for pop singers. Perhaps he figured he could never top this one and wisely quit while he was ahead. Recommended.

blue highlight denotes track pick