In 2001, trumpeter Mike Vax organized a road tour for a big band mostly comprised of Stan Kenton alumni. Some of the selections released on this album (taken from various live concerts from the tour) are straight from the Kenton book, but others are adaptations or more recent originals, and the solos in all cases are spontaneous rather than taken off records. With such fine players as trumpeter Steve Huffsteter, altoist Kim Richmond, pianist Liz Sesler-Beckman, baritonist Bruce Johnstone, altoist Kim Richmond, and Vax being among the many soloists, the band swings such numbers as "Speak Low," Bill Holman's famous arrangement of "Stompin' at the Savoy," "Theme and Variations," "MacArthur Park," and "Eager Beaver." Johnstone, Huffsteter, and especially Richmond contribute arrangements very much in the Kenton style to this worthy project.
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow