Al Hirt

Trumpet and Strings

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Trumpet and Strings Review

by Scott Yanow

Al Hirt, one of the most famous jazz trumpeters of the 1960s, usually played Dixieland in a virtuosic style that often showed that he was really overqualified for the idiom. He had a couple pop hits after signing with RCA (including "Java") and was sometimes featured in different settings than usual. For this particular LP, Hirt is joined by an orchestra and string section arranged by Marty Paich. The emphasis is mostly on ballads (only "East of the Sun" and "Easy to Love" are medium tempo). Unfortunately, the string parts are dull and unimaginative, and Hirt is not inspired to do much more than state melodies and play it safe. A bit of a disappointment.

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