Monday Night Big Band

Thanks to Thad: Plays Music of Thad Jones

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Monday Night Big Band was formed by Swedish bandleader Jorgen Nilsson in memory of his friend, Thad Jones, not long after his death. This big band CD sticks almost exclusively to Jones' compositions, with the exception of a swinging arrangement of Ray Charles' "Hallelujah I Love Her So," complete with a somewhat soulful vocal by trumpet Niklas Fredin. But the true highlights are, of course, Jones' songs. "Crack Down" is a superb up-tempo swinger featuring trombonist Ola Akerman and guitarist Krister Palqvist, while some of his more familiar compositions, including the easygoing "Evol Deklaw Ni" and the mid-tempo bop classic "Mean What You Say," are also nicely done. The solos and section work throughout this studio date are at a consistently high level. While this CD will never eclipse any of Thad Jones' own big band recordings, it is a welcome and very enjoyable tribute.

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