Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra

Nice Work

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Jim McNeely conducts the Danish Radio Jazz Orchestra on these 1998 studio sessions. McNeely, an accomplished pianist and writer, whose work was still gaining wider recognition at the time these recordings were made, wrote all of the arrangements, except for "Moksha," a marvelous blend of colors with a somewhat plodding rhythm, contributed by tenor saxophonist Tomas Stanko. McNeely, whose considerable piano chops are limited to the introduction to his "Reflection," shines with his five originals and a refreshing look at Gershwin's "Nice Work If You Can Get It," getting the most out of this talented, if under-recognized, orchestra. The opening clarinet solo to the rather wild "...and Rhythm" is taken from Gershwin's "Rhapsody in Blue" before it evolves into an imaginative reworking of "I Got Rhythm." This rewarding CD is well worth acquiring.

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