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The Jazz KENnection by Kenny Davern & Ken Peplowski

Here’s a must have for lovers of great traditional jazz by two of the most prominent reedmen on the scene. The "Jazz KENnection" is, of course, Kenny Davern and Ken Peplowski backed by a top-notch rhythm section.

Kenny Davern is, perhaps, the only living and active member of the Eddie Condon band. Davern was still a youngster when he played with the legendary guitarist. With dozens of credits under his belt, Kenny Davern can "name drop" all night without a repetition. They are all there from Wild Bill Davison, Vic Dickenson, Red Allen, Jo Jones, Buck Clayton to such relative modernists as Flip Phillips. At age 67, the clarinetist is more eloquent than ever.

Ken Peplowski was voted "best emerging talent" by JazzTimes critic’s poll in 1990 making him a relative "newcomer" in traditional jazz terms. Many top stars value Pep’s abilities and he has recorded with a diverse group of entertainers including Mel Tormé, Peggy Lee, George Shearing, Charlie Byrd, Leon Redbone and Steve Allen. He also tours with his own big band playing the music of Benny Goodman. Peplowski is equally at home with tenor and alto saxophones as well as clarinet.

The music on this CD is drawn from jazz standards and seldom heard but brilliant compositions. Among the latter are "I’m Satisfied With My Gal" penned by the late New Orleans trumpeter, Sharkey Bonano. Sharkey left this world in 1972 but he won’t soon be forgotten. New Orleans pioneers Peter Bocage and A.J.Piron composed "Mama’s Gone, Goodbye." An absolute delight is the "very hot" Chicago Rhythm. Regrettably, it is much too short at less than three minutes. The two stars join together on clarinet for a swinging version of the James P.Johnson tune, "A Porter’s Love Song To a Chambermaid including a wonderful guitar solo by Howard Alden.

This is a faultless album.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: Kenny Davern & Ken Peplowski
  • CD Title: The Jazz KENnection
  • Genre: Traditional / New Orleans
  • Year Released: 2001
  • Record Label: Arbors Jazz
  • Tracks: I’m Satisfied With My Gal; Mama’s Gone, Goodbye; I’ll See You In My Dreams; Georgia On My Mind; Careless Love; Creole Love Call; Chicago Rhythm; All Of Me; A Porter’s Love Song To a Chambermaid.
  • Musicians: Kenny Davern (clarinet); Ken Peplowski (alto sax; clarinet on track 9); Howard Alden (guitar); John Bunch (piano); Greg Cohen (bass); Tony DeNicola (drums).
  • Rating: Five Stars
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