In A Modal Tone
Pete Rugolo And Orchestra
Terrific program from the creative Rugolo. Going out on a limb, Rugolo varies the approaches/moods to engage you throughout this well-paced set.
From the back cover: Pete Rugolo has become an increasingly variegated professional writer. He has produced music for films, for vocal backgrounds, for TV shows of varying requirements, for jazz bands, for just about any assignment involving score paper. Born in Sicily in 1915, Pete was brought to California when he was five. He began his career as a professional pianist in the late 30s in the San Francisco-Oakland area. He became nationally and then internationally known as a result of his charging, ambitiously diversified arrangements for the Stan Kenton orchestra from 1945 to 1949. In his free-lance years since, he has acquired growing skills in the afore cited areas and in several more.
For Pete, this album was a chance to indicate the different ways he feels materials in the jazz idiom can be approached. "I wrote each tune the way I felt it," he explains, "There are ballads and concert pieces and swingers, but I didn't restrict myself to a rule that every bar had to swing or that there had to be a certain amount of commercial writing. These are simply some of the ways in which I like to write. I was given complete freedom of material and in the selection of musicians. This album was written, incidentally, during a particularly demanding month when I had to provide arrangements for two other albums beside this and some other assignments. Yet because this involved writing the way I felt, I completed this album in time and in the way I wanted it to sound.
This album was made in three sessions. Present on all were pianist, Russ Freeman, Bassist Joe Mondraogon, Drummer Shelley Manne, and Vibist Larry Bunker. The alternate guitars were Howard Roberts and Barney Kessel. Among the other familiar names besides those not already given solo credit were Maynard Ferguson, Buddy Chiders, Ray Linn and Tuba, Jay McAllister.
Also from the back cover: In A Modal Tone was originally written for piano by Rugolo in 1940 as an exercise when he was studying at Mills college. "I wanted to call it Darius, after Darius Milhaud, who was one of my teachers there. It's very polytonal but is based on a modal scale that is not, however, utilized all the way through." The instrumentation is two French horns, two trumpets, two trombones and tuba.
Don't Play The Melody
In A Modal Tone
Sunday Mondays Or Always
The Boy Next Door
Ballade For Drums
Smoke Gets In Your Eyes