January 2000 Film Music CD Reviews

Film Music Editor: Ian Lace
Music Webmaster Len Mullenger

Michael Foster Project: Live at Donna's Kick some Brass Fred Jackson - Alto Sax,  Frank Williams - trombone, (Lft-Rt--sitting) Wendel Tilford - trumpet, Ronald Moss - drums, Michael Foster leader- Sousaphone, Kier Johnson - Tenor Sax  (Lft-Rt--standing) Rampart Records RR002

$15 +$3 postage Obtain from Donna's Brass Band Headquarters, In the French Quarter, Corner of St Ann & Rampart Streets, 800 N Rampart St, New Orleans, LA 70116. (504) 940-5442 Fax (504) 940-0197 rampartrec@aol.com

downloadable files http://www.Donnasbarandgrill.com/rampart.htm

1.Mardi Gras Funk

2.Kick Some Brass

3.Big "T" Daddy

4.It Ain't my fault

5.Chicken Grease

6.Cat House

7.Bourbon Street Parade

8.When It All Comes Together

9.Down By The Riverside

10.When The Saints Go Marching In

Michael Foster-Sousaphone, Frank Williams-Trombone, Kier Johnson-Tenor Sax, Fred Jackson-Alto Sax, Wendel Tilford-Trumpet, Ronald Moss-Drums, Anthony Jackson- Bari Sax, Maria Foster -Percussion

To the regular UK jazz fan a line-up of Trumpet, Trombone, Alto, Tenor, Sousaphone and Drums would not be what any of us were expecting, it is only when you realise that the Michael Foster Project combine Night Club appearances, with the role of a traditional New Orleans Street Band, that everything starts to fit into place. After all the well known Dirty Dozen have already made the street band into an art form!

The first four tracks are all Michael Foster compositions, each is tuneful and well suited to the band. As all of the musicians involved are highly trained and well qualified, you would expect a quality performance, but it is the obvious enthusiasm of the band that makes this CD exciting. The jazz influences range from the Delta to Coltrane and beyond, there is no limit to what these guys can do. Frank William's trombone solo on It ain't my fault was particularly well constructed and interesting, although all the soloists have something worthwhile to say.

Michael Foster has some mighty "chops" to get round the Sousaphone the way he does, most of the time he plays the base line but uses the instrument in the front line on most ensembles. The band have appeared at many jazz festivals in the USA and I would recommend them to European Festival Director's, as a band who can play anytime anywhere, there is a shortage of good band's of that type on the UK scene anyway.

I was particularly intrigued by the way the band tackled funky numbers, without the usual rhythm section this can sound lumpy and stilted, these guys can do it. Their repertoire is very varied and on the CD three traditional tracks Bourbon Street, Down By the Riverside and When the Saints Go Marching In are played with the same enthusiasm as the original compositions.

Personally, I have not heard a lot of this kind of music, there are not many New Orleans Marching Bands in Coventry! If they play any where in the Midland's in the future, I will be there to hear them, for sheer enthusiasm they are unbeatable.


Don Mather


Don Mather plays Tenor Sax and Clarinet and runs a Big Band in Coventry


Don Mather

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