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Classical Music Review

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Winter Wonderland


Performed by: George Gee Swing Orchestra
Label: George Gee
RRP: £13.99
Release Date: 01 November 2023

George Gee Swing Orchestra release their new festive album, Winter Wonderland, which features Yuletide Jazz by one of New York City’s top Swing Big Bands. The George Gee Swing Orchestra plays ten seasonal musical favourites arranged creatively by David Gibson with special vocals by singer John Dokes...

George Gee Swing Orchestra's newest recording consists of ten beloved Christmas songs which, with its David Gibson arrangements, are filled with swinging ensembles, passionate solos, and subtle surprises. The nine-piece group includes six horn players: trumpeters Freddie Hendrix and Andy Gravish, altoist Anthony Nelson Jr, Michael Hashim on tenor, baritonist Patience Higgins, and trombonist/music director David Gibson. Along with the rhythm trio of pianist Steve Einerson, bassist Malik McLaurine and drummer Chris Latona - they all have opportunities to solo in addition to adding their individual voices to the ensembles.

The album takes 10 familiar festive songs and puts an upbeat, modern spin on them. It's interesting to note how from track to track the arranger has gone out of their way to ensure that each feels fresh and wildly different in style from the other songs on the recording, showcasing the wide breadth that swing encompasses.

If you want to get in the swing of Christmas then there's no finer way of ensuring you're in the grove this holiday season.

Track listing:

01. Winter Wonderland Mambo F. Bernard/R. Smith (Solos: Hendrix, Nelson Jr.) (3:25)
02. What Child Is This? Traditional/Public Domain (Solos: Hendrix, Hashim, Gibson, Einerson) (5:17)
03. Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas H. Martin/R. Blane (Vocals: Dokes, Solo: Gravish) (3:37)
04. God Rest Ye Merry, Gentlemen Traditional/Public Domain (Solos: Nelson Jr., Gibson, Gravish, Einerson) (5:54)
05. I’ll Be Home For Christmas W. Kent/K. Gannon (Vocals: Dokes, Solo: Einerson) (3:37)
06. Baby, It’s Cold Outside F. Loesser (Vocal Duet: John Dokes and Hilary Gardner) (3:08)
07. The Christmas Song R. Wells/M. Torme (Vocals: Dokes, Solo: Hashim) (3:51)
08. O Tannenbaum Traditional/Public Domain (Solos: Gibson, Higgins, Hendrix, Einerson) (5:29)
09. What Are You Doing New Year’s Eve? F. Loesser (Vocals: Dokes, Solo: Higgins) (4:27)
10. Jingle Bells J. Pierpont/Public Domain (Solo: Nelson Jr.) (2:50)


Darren Rea

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Digital album
Digital album