A Sentimental Christmas by Gerry Beaudoin And The Boston Jazz Ensemble is an elegant, sophisticated and swinging tribute to holiday music done in the jazz style. Award winning jazz guitarist Gerry Beaudoin (1992 National Association Of Independant Record Producers award for best jazz recording, 1993 Cadence Magazine Editors Choice Award for IN A SENTIMENTAL MOOD,1995 Cadence Magazine Editors Choice Award for SENTIMENTAL CHRISTMAS and a 1998 Grammy nomination)made three fine recordings with the Boston Jazz Ensemble before moving on to perform with a who's who in the jazz and blues worlds including David Grisman, Duke Robillard, Jay Geils, Ronnie Earl, Howard Alden, Frank Vignola, Eddie" Cleanhead" Vinson, Jay McShann, The New Guitar Summit, John Pizzarelli, Bucky Pizzarelli and harmonica legend Jerry Portnoy. When Gerry put together a band for his first Boston Jazz Ensemble project, In A Sentimental Mood, he chose great musicians like Rich Latielle from Roomful Of Blues on alto sax, jazz percussion legend, Alan Dawson on drums and vibes, Fred Lipsius from Blood Sweat and Tears on tenor sax, piano chairman Paul Schmeling from the prestigious Berklee College Of Music, jazz artist in residence at Brandies University, Bob Neskie on acoustic bass and Jeff Stout, from the Buddy Rich Band on trumpet and flugelhorn, to relize his vision of a swinging, elegant and sophisticated small jazz group with a big sound. In A Sentimental Mood was released in 1992 to rave reviews in both the pop andjazz press. It was soon followed by Sentimental Over You and Sentimental Christmas. The unique sound and pristine musicianship of the band and the new and thoughtful arrangements of songs from the Great American songbook made all three recordings a favorite of music lovers worldwide. It is fitting testimony to the music that In A Sentimental Mood and Sentimental Christmas are still in print over ten years after their release and are sold worldwide by the company that first gave Gerry Beaudoin his chance to relize his dream of making beautiful music. A Sentimental Christmas has unique arrangements of popular holiday favorites performed by great musicians and is the perfect recording for your holiday parties, quite nights at home with the family or a holiday gift or stocking stuffer.
A NOTE FROM GERRY BEAUDOIN: I have been on over 22 recordings in my career. I was skeptical if I could pull off a Christmas recording in the jazz style. Once I started writing the arrangements I knew I had a winner. All the musicians gave their all and got into making a Christmas recording in July. I have many fans that have told me through the years that they really enjoy this recording and listen to it all year round. One night a few years ago I listened to it when every one had gone to bed and realized why people thought it was such a good recording. Jazz is usually based on popular tunes of the day played in the jazz style. Christmas tunes are popular tunes for the season and the guys in my band took the challenge and played as they would on any other jazz tune. Thanks Paul, Bob, Allen, Fred and Jeff. To our friends and fans please enjoy listening to this recording as much as we enjoyed making it. Happy holidays. Gerry Beaudoin and the Boston Jazz Ensemble. Also please check out our other Boston Jazz Ensemble CD In A Sentimental Mood at www.cdbaby.com/beaudoin4
REVIEW FROM CHRISTMAS REVIEWS WEBSITE:
Gerry Beaudoin and the Boston Jazz Ensemble play a highly stylized form of jazz, sometimes an almost an "old-fashioned" jazz, a jazz that harks back to sometime in during the '50s when jazz (as I know and love it) was at its zenith. At times it swings, but it is mostly cool. Then, at other times it sounded contemporary almost to the point of being new age.
The Ensemble's sound is stylistically similar to a lot of traditional jazz trios. But an ensemble (this one features seven musicians) can be a lot more versatile than a trio, and this one is quite versatile. There is a lot of nice improvisational riffing throughout, but it is never forced. I got the feeling these musicians are comfortable together and that whenever one of them wanted to take the song in a certain direction, the others could and would intuitively follow.
The songs themselves are a standard set of traditional carols and well-known popular songs, beginning with a toe-tapping rendition of Deck The Halls, which serves to set a mood and a tempo for the entire CD, as well as introducing the voices of the ensemble. One somewhat novel selection was Silver And Gold, played in a lively, yet moody way thanks to Jeff Stout's fine work on trumpet.
With its high contrast between exaggeration and understatement, there was quite a bit hold my attention, leading me to believe it will be generally quite accessible to most listeners. This is a jazz record for dreamers, romantics, and pure jazzers.