Magazine article IAJRC Journal

No Time to Lose

Magazine article IAJRC Journal

No Time to Lose

Article excerpt

Michel Delage Jazz Company

No Time to Lose

MDJC 0807

Michel Delage (tpt, bugle, orchestration, musical director) Guy Bodet (tpt, bugle) Francois Penot (ts,as) Pascal Faidy (as, ts) Nicolas Scheid (ts) John Barton (barys) Marc Antony (tb, vcls) Olivier Riviere (basstbn) Antoine Hervier (p) Ted Scheips (g) Laurent Vanhée (b) Pascal Combeau (d) Julie Morillon (vcls)

No Time to Lose*/Black Coffee/Come on Back/Cécile, ma Fille/My Heart Belongs to Daddy/Shoe Shine Boy/Swing That Music/What Now My Love/What's This/I Feel Pretty/Ma Pipe (Shimmy Baby) *Composed by Michel Delage.

When I heard the Michel Delage Jazz Company for the first time at the La Rochelle (France) Jazz Festival, back in May 2006, I was floored, hardly able to believe my ears. The band's arrangements, articulation, shadings, and musicianship, along with the improvised solos and, above all, its swing were so marvelous that I was both enchanted and baffled. Having followed jazz in France for many years, I had never heard of Michel Delage or of his group and I wondered: Who is Michel Delage? Where has he been?

In fact I learned that he has been an active musician for many years, but the national limelight had yet to focus on him. Delage is an example of something I had observed in the US over many years, a kind of 'Peck Kelley' phenomenon (Kelley, a Texas-based pianist became 'famous for not being famous' after Jack Teagarden praised him) . In cities and villages throughout the land, sometimes in the most unexpected places, there are talented musicians plugging away in obscurity. Some are extraordinarily good and unless you are fortunate to stumble on their work, you may never hear of them.

The case of Michel Delage is exceptional and I am happy to bring news of his work to the attention of IAJRC readers. This CD produced by Michel Delage presents musicians of a high caliber who play Delage's well-crafted arrangements in a way that lifted my spirits high. The attacks, the releases, and the intonation of this group are flawless and the group projects an irresistible energy, rhythm and swing. Their performance is exhilarating and peppered with improvisations, vocals (the magnificent rendition of Shoe Shine Boy alone is worth the price of admission), and jazz references that fit like a glove into the fine arrangements. …

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