Allan Vaché

Swing & Other Things

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Allan Vache, best known for his longtime association with Jim Cullum, is a fiery, chance-taking clarinetist whose main influence is Benny Goodman. The BG connection is felt even stronger than usual on this CD due to the instrumentation (the same as the first Benny Goodman Sextet), the 1940s-era standards, and the playing of the sidemen. Pianist Johnny Varro has long kept Teddy Wilson's sound alive, vibraphonist John Cocuzzi recalls both Lionel Hampton and Red Norvo, and brother/cornetist Warren Vache makes a welcome guest appearance on "Cheek to Cheek"; it is a pity that he is not on more selections. Although a touch derivative, Allan Vache is heard in top form throughout the enjoyable set, and such rarely performed numbers as "June Night," "Rachel's Dream" and Mel Powell's "Hi Ya, Sophia" are among the highlights.

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