Don Ellis


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Soaring Review

by Scott Yanow

The last album by Don Ellis' big band before the trumpeter suffered a heart attack that would ultimately cut short both his career and his life, this underrated set finds Ellis' orchestra consisting of seven brass (including tuba), four strong woodwind players, a string quartet, and an enlarged six-piece rhythm section that includes guitarist Jay Graydon and keyboardist Milcho Leviev. A special highlight is "Invincible" which is an outstanding feature for altoist Vince Denham; whatever happened to him? Ellis composed four of the eight originals including one titled "The Devil Made Me Write This Piece!" This out-of-print Lp is well worth searching for.

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