28 July 2006


Don Ellis
trumpet, flugelhorn, Superbone, Super-trumpet (Firebird?)

Saxes & Woodwinds
Ann Patterson
Ted Nash
James Coile
James Snodgrass

Glenn Stuart
Gil Rathel
Jack Coan

French Horn
Sidney Muldrow

Alan Kaplan
Richard Bullock- bass trombone

Jim Self
Pam Tompkins - violin
Laurie Badessa - violin
Jimbo Ross - viola
Paula Hochhalter - cello

Randy Kerber - piano, electric piano, clavinet, synthesizer
Darrell Clayborn - bass
Dave Crigger - drums
Mike Englander - drums
Chino Valdes - latin percussion
Ruth Ritchie - percussion

Additional Personnel

Israel Baker
Alan Harshman
Dick Nash
George Doering

REVIEW from DON ELLIS www.home.earthlink.net/~tfronauer/home.html
"Don's first album for Atlantic, and the first one since his heart attack. Apparently Atlantic wanted to cash in on the Star Wars craze, so not only did the band (now dubbed Survival for some strange reason) perform two tunes from the movie, Atlantic made severe edits to Don's tunes, and suggested he alter the songs' titles to fit the space theme of the album. I like how the subtitle on the cover "Featuring the Main Title Theme from STAR WARS" is bigger than Don's name. Money talks and the execs listen.
Truth is, Don's version of the "Star War" theme is pretty questionable, but the originals are decent. In particular, "Lyra" is a nice feature for Don's superbone, and I like the melody of the all-too-brief "Ursa." All of the tracks have a very late 70s sound to them…not that that's a bad thing, I have an affinity for that type of music having grown up with it. I can see Ponch and John at the roller rink enjoying these tunes. The ensemble is tight, but nobody in this large group really seems to solo on these tracks except for Don, even though some of his sidemen are guys like Ted Nash, Alan Kaplan, Glenn Stuart, and Jimbo Ross. This version of the band is heard to better effect on the Live at Montreux album."

I still think this album's pretty good but have to agree that Montreux is a killer live set and will be posting it next.
Ripped from the original vinyl-but found out when researching this post that Wounded Bird have (unbelievably)just re-issued it on cd.


Oregarus said...

It appears that track 06 Crypton is a corrupt file. Otherwise I love this post. I have never heard the Star Wars theme in quite this manner. Thank you. I love your blog.

ISBUM said...

Right on time with these posts O!
Don's birthday was July 25th.
Is there any chance that the track here got un-corrupted? I love this record!