Marty Grosz

Marty Grosz and His Hot Combination

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Marty Grosz is a fine guitar player and singer, and has earned a solid rep as a purveyor of classic jazz styles. He's joined on Marty Grosz and His Hot Combination by a number of other players associated with classic styles, including clarinetist Ken Peplowski and trumpeter Jon-Erik Kellso. The main idea of the album, then, is fairly straightforward: surround yourself with great players, choose a handful of standards, and play your heart out. The collection begins with a spry, instrumental take on Dave Ringle and Duke Ellington's "Alabamy Home" before delving into a fine vocal version of Harold Adamson and Walter Donaldson's "Did I Remember?" The track list includes lots of love songs and a neat take on "Just a Gigolo," revealing that Grosz has a romantic sensibility tinged with humor. The only item that distracts from the proceedings is Grosz's lengthy spoken introductions to "Just a Gigolo" and "English Blues." While both are more like funny monologues than introductions proper, they're too long and serve to interrupt the flow of music. Otherwise, Marty Grosz and His Hot Combination is a lovely album that reveals how joyful jazz was before the modern era.

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