The formal title of this wonderful disc is Richard Simon Presents Sam Most and Al Viola. Bassist Simon has shared the stage with an impressive group of musicians in his time, from Buddy Collette to Pete Fountain to Keely Smith. With his UFO Bass label he has managed to bring together two jazz icons, recorded live at the LAX Heraton in 2001. Reed player/jazz flute pioneer Sam Most was 70 and guitar Al Viola was pushing 82. You’ll forgive the lack of delicacy, but these "old" guys sound fresh, energized and completely on top of their game. Most plays his warm and luxuriant flute on four of the nine tunes on the set and is as impressive as when I was first turned on to him in the mid 1970s. He’s particularly impressive on medium up tempo of "Softly As In A Morning Sunrise," on which Viola demonstrates his stunning guitar licks, ala Herb Ellis, and trades fours with Simon. Most takes an impressive vocal turn on "Route 66," and switches between sax and clarinet for the rest of the program. Throughout Viola and Simon are delights. Viola is particularly impressive on "My Romance." This is a collaboration of master musicians that a few lucky patrons saw one night a couple of years ago. It’s a treat to have the night preserved for those of us who couldn’t get in that night.
Artist / Group Name:Sam Most and Al Viola
CD Title:Pacific Standard Time
Record Label:UFO Bass
Musicians:Sam Most (flute, sax, clarinet, vocals), Al Viola (guitar), Richard Simon (bass)