Louie Bellson

Live at Ronnie Scott's

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AllMusic Review by

Although drummer Louie Bellson is the leader of the big band heard on this 1979 set (reissued by DRG on CD), tenor saxophonist Don Menza is the main star. Not only does the fiery saxophonist solo on four of the six songs (which also include features for trumpeter Bobby Shew and altoist Joe Romano) but he contributed four originals and most of the arrangements. Trumpeter Bill Berry and pianist Nat Pierce are also heard from (unfortunately the full personnel is not given) as is tenorman Larry Covelli (who successfully battles Menza to a draw on "Time Check") and the drummer-leader, but it is for the playing and writing of the underrated Don Menza that this disc is most highly recommended.

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