Frank Rosolino

The Last Recording

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It took Frank Rosolino's widow Diane many years to find a label willing to release this music, and that is understandable. Frank Rosolino, one of jazz's greatest trombonists, went crazy on November 26, 1978, shooting two of his sons and killing himself. The completely unexpected turn of events from a trombonist who was witty and always seemed in good spirits was a shock to the jazz world, but he had apparently suffered from depression for years. In addition, the music on The Last Recording, recorded less than four months before the horrible ending, features Rosolino using a Multivider on his horn, an electronic device that gave him a sound in three octaves at once. However, the electronics do not stop Rosolino from sounding as distinctive, fluent and witty as ever; his sound is still present. And the tragic events that were coming up in the near future are not hinted at during this cheerful and swinging set. Rosolino is in excellent form as is pianist Larry Willis. Although there are two versions apiece of three songs, each of the renditions are quite different from each other and none of the selections are throwaways. Frank Rosolino fans and those who enjoy exuberant bebop trombone are recommended to pick up this lost treasure.

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