Review | Vic Arnold

Doc Stewart

Chris ” Doc ” Stewart is a prominent emergency room doctor with the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona. He plays alto saxophone and he is a dedicated follower of Julian ” Cannonball ” Adderley.    Code Blue !, is what is called out in the emergency room when a patient has a cardiac or respiratory arrest, so its a fitting title for a recording made by a doctor who spends his working life saving lives.

This recording commences with a four part composition by Tom Kubis and Doc Stewart entitled The Code Blue Suite and covers birth to death and then on to rebirth.  

The Code Blue Suite was written by Doc Stewart with Tom Kubis. Click here for a video of a live performance of Code Pink – Born To See Blues by the Tom Kubis Big Band. Doc Stewart is on alto.

The remaining 10 tracks are a mixture of old and new compositions, two by ‘Cannonball’ Adderley, some by Tom Kubis and Doc Stewart, and the remainder are standards.

Click here to listen to Hal Galper’s Snakin’ The Grass from the album. The arrangement is by Tom Kubis and Ron Stout is on trumpet, Kevin Axt, bass.

There are 19 musicians on this recording, 6 reeds, 10 brass, and piano, bass and drums, all from the Los Angeles area. They all play well, but, to my mind, the arrangements could have had more ” bounce “. If you enjoy big band music this recording may very well be for you. I particularly liked their version of Bobby Timmons’s Dis Here and Oscar Pettiford’s Bohemia After Dark, and the Code Blue Suite certainly has its moments. Vic Arnold for Sandy Brown Jazz

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