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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Don Mather, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf, Glyn Pursglove

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Salutes the Great Entertainers

Double Scoop DSCD 06



1. The Joint is Jumpin'
2. A Little More to Love
3. I'm in the Mood for Love
4. The Jumpin' Jive
5. On the Sunny Side of the Street
6. Boulevard of Broken Dreams
7. Rags to Riches
8. Flyin' Home
9. Your Feet's Too Big
10. Is That Train Ever Comin'
11. Stardust
12. Night and Day
13. Don't You Go Away Mad
14. That's All


Ray Gelato is not exactly backward in coming forward. He monopolises this record with his singing and his tenor sax, while the sleeve-note doesn't even tell us who plays what in the rest of the band. There's just a list of "The great guys in the Band: Danny Marsden, Andy Rogers, Paul Booth, Mike Janisch, Gunther Kurmayr, Matt Home". From other sources, I have discovered that Marsden is on trumpet, Rogers on trombone, Paul Booth on saxophone, Janisch on the bass, Kurmeyr at the piano, and Matt Home at the drums.

The pretext for this CD is that Ray Gelato "salutes the great entertainers" but one is left with the feeling that Ray is actually saluting Ray Gelato. His vocals are nothing special: indeed, they sometimes only approximate to the tune, so that the melody is not always distinct. But his sax playing packs a punch, with a big sound reminsicent of the Texas tenorists, especially when he solos powerfully on Boulevard of Broken Dreams. And his saxophone speaks with convincing emotion in Stardust.

At any rate, Gelato and his band have built up a reputation for swinging music that is good for dancing or partying, borrowing especially from the jump-jive styles of Louis Jordan and Louis Prima. Maybe it wasn't the best idea to start the album with The Joint is Jumpin', which arouses comparisons with Fats Waller's classic version. However, the track is saved by some sparkling piano from Gunther Kurmayr. In the same way, I'm in the Mood for Love stands out for its hot trumpet solo. In fact, the band makes this album special, even though the group is subservient to Ray Gelato's ego.


Tony Augarde





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