Harry Smallenburg | Live at the Balzac

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Live at the Balzac

by Harry Smallenburg

Live straight-ahead jazz with an easy but intense upbeat swinging feel.
Genre: Jazz: Traditional Jazz Combo
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1. Well You Needn't (Monk)
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2. Moon River (Mancini)
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3. Just Friends (Klemmer/Lewis)
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4. Where or When (Rogers/Hart)
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5. All Blues (Davis)
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6. On the Street Where you Live (Lerner/Lowe)
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7. Blue Bossa (Dorham)
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Album Notes
Harry Smallenburg has had a varied career as an educator, composer, arranger, and musician, playing both in the Detroit area and in Southern California, where he lives currently.

He started out playing trombone because he didn't think his parents would let him play drums, but when he finally conned them into it, his teacher said he'd better learn mallet instruments too.

That was the beginning of vibes, and he's stuck with them ever since, though he also gigs on drums and trombone.

He's played with area classical and jazz groups, most recently appearing on Steve Wilkerson's CD, Licorice Ice.

Teaching literature, humanities, history of science, and literature of the Bible has brought him into touch with a wide variety of styles and attitudes, from Samuel Beckett and James Joyce to John Cage, Harrison Birtwistle, and Harry Partch, not to mention John Coltrane, the World Sax Quartet, and Charles Mingus.

Harry often tells classes he has the largest collection of CDs no one else wants to listen to in all of Southern California.

He plays them for captive classroom audiences.

"Live at the Balzac" was recorded over a series of evening sessions out in Azusa.


The musicians obviously did.


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CD Baby

Live straight-ahead jazz with an easy but intense upbeat swinging feel. A jazz combo featuring vibes and a tricked out drummer that will challenge your notion of what a traditional jazz drummer should do. All around great and enjoyable jazz album.

Bruce Wells Sr.

Smallenburg is great; Bassist Bill Casale is old friend of mine.
Novel idea recording live there, sounds like good ol' days. Not the best recording conditions.

Michael Stephans

From the Heart...
When you listen to Smallenberg, you're experiencing a musician who plays from the heart, and is consistently swinging and joyous. This outing at the Balzac typifies the kind of thing I'm talking about. These guys play no-nonsense, straight-ahead jazz and they do it with exuberance, maturity, and skill. A pleasurable release indeed, and one that I heartily recommend to even the most casual of jazz listeners.

Michael Stephans