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Monday, April 18, 2022

Art Ford Party For Marty - Marty Holmes

Coolus Maximus

Art Ford Party For Marty
Marty Holmes Octette
Arrangements by Marty Holmes
Producer: Irving Falk
Cover Design: Sy Leichman
Photograph: Charles Varon
Recorded at Regent Sound Studio
Engineer: George Schowerer, Jr.
Jubilee 1099

From the back cover: Jazz turns a new corner as Marty Holmes comes into his own.

This amazing young man is the first modern musician to breathe warmth and heart that distinguished the Swing Era into the bright new 1960 music world. The dragon that conquered the big band of the thirties and forties is met square on by Marty Holmes' incisive planning. The big band became too big and transportation and payroll costs forced it to virtually disappear from the scene. The Marty Holmes Octette is small enough to survive and big enough for the full sounds you hear in this album.

In this first exciting set on Jubilee, I believe Marty submits his passport to fame. The sounds are alternately cool, sweet, and hot and yet – to use a term with still describes the goal of every popular musician – it really "swings"

People, and particularly, their own personalities, can create a jazz era. In the thirties, Fletcher Henderson, Don Rodman, Mary Lou Williams and Jimmy Lunceford gave us much of the same spark that made Swing so universally accepted. Marty Holmes' unique capacity to light this flame under today's more intellectual jazz structures is how beautifully in this album. Here for the first time is the proper blend of the emotions and the intelligence of the jazzmen of this era.

We cornered Marty at the session, and he said so simply, "I have believed for a long time that good jazz must be a stimulant; it must convey an invigorating feeling to the listener, and should make him feel happy rather than depressed. It should leave him with a good taste in his soul. It's got to swing!" We agreed and marveled as we listened to what he was able to do with his basic five-horn section. He produces almost any sounds he needs for Holmes-jazz, anything from a trombone choir to a full ensemble.

Marty's hobbies are playing piano, listening to classical music and reading about all breeds of dogs. He has a wire-haired terrier named Duffy for which "Duffy's Dilemma" is named. Possibly the thing about Marty that impresses you most if the utter sincerity about his fight for the dignity of the jazz musician. He said it after the session as we set around listening to the playbacks. "One of the most disgraceful things present today is the stigma attached to the jazz musicians, and his "zero" standing in the community. Too many people forget that the jazz musician is a professional like a lawyer or a doctor; he has spent many years learning his craft; he is trying to protect something that after all is an American heritage; he is one of the few professional men who has any inborn talent; therefor he should not be shunned and looked upon as a 'social mis-fit': he is early that. I believe that a step in the right direction insofar and "PUBLIC  RE-EDUCATION is concerned is good, healthy swinging jazz.

In this great album, Marty says the same thing in music. – Art Ford

Duffy's Dilemma
Someone To Watch Over Me
Pepper Hot
I Get Along Without You Very Well
Love Walked In
Party For Marty
Moonlight In Vermont
Four Bluesers
Maybe Soon
Tales Of Wales
Was There A Call For Me?
Coolus Maximus

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