The European Nagel-Heyer label has documented many swing-oriented jams during the past decade. This live set is particularly noteworthy for it features three multi-instrumentalists in the front line. Dan Barrett is best known as a trombonist but he splits his time on this session between trombone and cornet. Tom Baker, who is usually a trumpeter, is also heard here on trombone, alto, and tenor sax. And Scott Robinson, whose greatest fame seems to be as a baritonist, apparently did not have time to play that horn since he is featured on tenor, alto, clarinet, and a normaphone (which sounds like a valve trombone). With fine support from pianist Chris Hopkins, Eddie Erickson (on guitar and banjo), bassist Joel Forbes, and drummer Jeff Hamilton, this is a high-quality modern swing date. "Vic's Spot" (for Vic Dickenson) has both Barrett and Barker on trombones, although oddly enough they do not perform any tunes with both trumpet and cornet. Among the other highlights are Erickson's vocal on "Easy Street," a haunting rendition of "The Lamp Is Low" (Barrett provided all of the arrangements for the project), a Hopkins trio feature on "Jumpin' Punkins," and such jams as "Linger Awhile," "I Double Dare You," and "Hindustan."
International Swing Party Review
by Scott Yanow