Italian bassist Maurizio Rolli has released what I can only describe as both masterful and one of the hippest Big-Band CDs I’ve heard in years. If you’re not a fan of Big Band music, don’t let that throw you.. This ain’t you’re grandfathers big band album. Opening with Hiram Bullock playing and singing Little Wing (one of the absolute coolest renditions I’ve ever heard of this tune.. Super hip reharms and Hiram just killed it!). featuring two original compositions and a slew of covers from Ozzy, Rush, The Police, Beatles, Hendrix, Yes & Aerosmith. Each one is indescribably interesting and full of lush arrangements.
Maurizio’s playing on both the fretless 6-string and upright is superb. Listeners may also want to check out his release, “Moodswings: a Tribute to Jaco Pastorius”.. just wonderful (he has many stellar albums, btw).
Back to this album, tho. Featuring Hiram Bullock, Stefano Cantini, Peter Erskine, Bob Franceschini, Bob Sheppard, Mike Stern, Achille Succi and his wonderful big band it really doesn’t get much better than this. I particularly like his ever-so-lyrical fretless solo on “Every Breath You Take”. Maurizio is not only a wonderful player with a distinct voice, but a masterful arranger. Truly a treasure trove of musicality!