Bad to the Bone
Thanks for your interest in Bad To The Bone. This recording is a tribute to the wonderful duet recordings of Kai Winding and J. J. Johnson. Other fine trombone duos have recorded (Carl Fontana/Jiggs Whigham, Al Grey/J.J. Johnson, John Allred/Wycliffe Gordon, Conrad Herwig/Steve Davis, and Mike Davis/Bill Reichenbach to name a few) but the work of Kai & J.J. has enjoyed the most enduring public recognition. Although the music on this recording was arranged and performed by Jim Owens and Brett Stamps, the influence of Kai & J.J. is evident. I am especially proud of the work by the rhythm section on this recording. It is very worth while to hear the performance of Lincoln Center Band Director's Academy clinicians Rick Haydon (guitar) and Reggie Thomas (piano), as well as the work by bassist Zeb Briskovich and drummer Miles Vandiver. Their performance on this CD says it all - they are the incredible. Blues For J & K is an energetic jazz shuffle written specifically for this recording in tribute to the memory of Kai Winding and J. J. Johnson. Our version of Summertime was influenced by a recording of Alone Together by Paul McKee and Carl Fontana. Never did Lennon and McCartney imagine suffering the indignity of two trombones playing their great composition, Blackbird, but this version turned out great with some great stuff by Reggie Thomas. In A Mellow Tone is up tempo and satisfied our desire to include a Duke Ellington piece on the CD. An impromptu performance of Alone Together by Jim and Brett was actually the inspiration for this recording. Arranging it with a bolero feel (inspired by Claire Fischer's Gaviotta) has given it a special flavor. Kudos to the rhythm section. Jim wrote Ants In Your Pants for daughter Ashby, who would experience a surge of energy at bedtime when she was little. This New Orleans feel reminds us of Bonerama and features four trombones and some great guitar work by Rick Haydon. Michel LeGrand's What Are You Doing The Rest Of Your Life? features beautiful ballad playing by Brett and Jim supported by guitarist Rick Haydon. This version of Stella was inspired by Frank Rosolino's treatment of There Is No Greater Love on his Free For All recording and is very typical of Kai & J.J.'s arranging approach. Embraceable You was inspired by Count Basie's approach to slow swing feel (Rick & Reggie are exceptional on this). Rick Haydon and I have enjoyed playing Keith Jarrett's Lucky Southern for years. I am not aware of many recordings of this tune and thought it would make a great samba for two trombones. The rhythm section sounds like a million bucks on this medium swing arrangement of Where Or When ala Basie. 1:17 am is a minor blues written by Jim years ago. Can you guess what time it was finished? Woody Herman's Four Brothers is for executive producer Bill Becker. It was arranged for four trombones instead of saxophones and allows us to feature two of St. Louis's outstanding trombonists, the venerable Jim Martin and the youthful Cody Henry. Brett Stamps is Director of Jazz Activities at Southern Illinois University Edwardsville where he is Professor of Music. He holds degrees from the College of William & Mary and the University of Miami. Professional credits include performances and recordings with the Stan Kenton Orchestra, the U.S. Army Jazz Ambassadors, the University of Miami Concert Jazz Band as well as numerous St. Louis-based organizations. He remains active as a composer/arranger, teacher/clinician and performer. Brett plays an Edwards .500 bore tenor trombone with a Bach 12C mouthpiece. Jim Owens holds degrees from SIUC and SIUE. He currently plays with the group Wild, Cool and Swinging and is a freelance trombonist and keyboardist in St. Louis. He is active as a composer and arranger and can be found on many Victoria Company recordings (most notably with trumpet artist Jim Manley). Jim recently joined the faculty at the University of Missouri St. Louis. Rick, Reggie, Miles and Zeb are all faculty at SIUE. Reggie is one of the clinician/adjudicators for Essentially Ellington at Lincoln Center. Rick Haydon is a Mel Bay recording artist and plays a Moll 7-String Guitar. Miles Vandiver plays Gretsch drums. Jim Martin teaches low brass at SIUE and toured formerly with Buddy Rich. Cody Henry is an SIUE graduate pursuing a master's degree at SIUE. He also works with Jazz St. Louis. . This CD was recorded at Music Masters Studio in St. Louis for Victoria Records. It was engineered and mastered by Greg Trampe.