Rick Fay's series of Arbors releases, which really got going in 1991, are superior examples of Dixieland and small-group swing. On this set Fay sticks to tenor and soprano (leaving his clarinet in the case), welcoming such major players as trumpeter Jon-Erik Kellso, trombonist Dan Barrett, clarinetist Chuck Hedges, pianist-arranger Dick Cary and guest-guitarist Howard Alden (who makes a couple of rare appearances on banjo) to his octet. The music is played with plenty of spirit and, although all of the music but three originals was already quite vintage at the time, the musicians come up with many fresh statements. Among the highlights are "I Double Dare You," a Dick Cary arrangement of Bix Beiderbecke's "In The Dark," "Somebody Loves Me," "Roll On, Mississippi, Roll On," and "Come Back Sweet Papa."
Share this page
AllMusic Review by Scott Yanow