Personnel: Buddy Morrow (trombone); Walter Andrus (vocals); Louie Stockwell (flute, clarinet, tenor saxophone); Doug Spoonamore (clarinet); Tom Baker (trumpet); Jeff King (trombone); Bill Carr (bass trombone); Tom Kasperek (drums).
Recording information: DeBenedetto Studio, New York, NY.
Arrangers: Bob Alberti; Jeff Holmes; Robert Hudson; Art Depew.
This album was originally issued as Walt Andrus with Buddy Morrow & His Orchestra on the Swingshift label. Now reissued on Hindsight, with Buddy Morrow getting top billing, it is another tribute to Frank Sinatra and his music. Morrow sat in the trombone section of the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra in 1938, a couple of years before the young Sinatra was to take over boy singing duties. Still heading a working Tommy Dorsey tribute band, Morrow's boy singer, Walt Andrus, with his strong, baritone voice, does a more than credible job of performing those standards that were Sinatra's. Andrus' voice even sounds a bit like his. This similarity is especially apparent on "Without a Song" and "The One I Love Belongs to Somebody Else." The album is a homage to Sinatra, and not a replication of the recordings he made of these tunes. The charts used by Morrow were put together by six arrangers. There is also some good instrumental solo work, most notably the sax solo by Louis Stockwell on "Oh Look at Me Now" and by Damon Gilbert on trumpet on "Can't We Be Friends?" Tom Kasperek's drums sets the pace for the band on the up-tempo numbers, which dominate this disc. While it will not replace the original, and there is no claim that this is the intention, this album is a nice adjunct, both in terms of the vocalizing and a good, swinging big band to the Sinatra albums where these songs are found. Recommended. ~ Dave Nathan