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Chris Walden Big Band & The St. John's Choir

Kurt Marti Suite

ORIGIN CLASSICAL 82482

“Walden writes with old-school technique but far-reaching vistas.”
Downbeat

Expressing his connection to the German language & culture, Chris Walden chose lyrics from the revered Swiss poet Kurt Marti to compose an ambitious new work for big band and choir. Born and raised in Hamburg, Walden dedicated the piece to the city's 100-member St John's Choir, who appear on the recording, along with his ensemble of renowned Los Angeles studio and jazz musicians. Besides the suite, "Slings and Arrows" is a composition by Michael Brecker, who appeared on Walden's first big band recording in 1995. "A compositional virtuoso..." - JazzTimes

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TRACKS:

1 Katechismusfragen 3:50
2 Hotel Jesus 3:23
3 Die Salbung 3:19
4 Ostermorgen 1:49
5 Bitte 2:05
6 Lobpreis 2:31
7 Anrufungen 2:58
8 Ganz Werden 1:56
9 Lichtstrahl 2:32
10 Protestantische Kirchenmusik 1:58
11 Predigtnot 2:19
12 Dahingehen 3:50
13 Slings and Arrows 5:23

PERFORMERS:

Chris Walden Big Band:

Jeff Driskill - Sax
Kim Richmond - Sax
Rob Lockart - Sax
Brandon Fields - Sax
Tom Peterson - Sax
Wayne Bergeron - Trumpet
Kye Palmer - Trumpet
Ron King - Trumpet
Sal Cracchiolo - Trumpet
Bob McChesney - Trombone
Alex Iles - Trombone
Arturo Velasco - Trombone
Rich Bullock - Trombone
Mitch Holder - Guitar
Alan Steinberger - Piano
Ken Wild - Bass
Dick Weller - Drums
M.B. Gordy - Vibes/Percussion

The St. John's Choir
Claus Bantzer - Director

PRODUCTION:

Recorded at Capitol Studios, Hollywood, 3/07
Recording and mixing engineer: Steve Genewick
Assistant engineers: Paul Smith, Dan Johnson
Mastering: Oliver Kels, Andreas Kolinski
Contractor: Shari Sutcliffe
Voice coach: Friederike Holldorf-Herzberg
Photographs: Beate Walden
Cover design & layout: John Bishop

REVIEWS:

Audiophile Audition (Jeff Krow)
Chris Walden is an adventurous soul. He has made a strong presence in the Los Angeles big band scene with several albums of straight ahead big band music, yet he has tackled non-traditional pop music for big band arrangements of Disney's When You Wish Upon a Star, and It's a Small World After All. On his first big band effort, (2005's Home of My H...
All Music Guide (Scott Yanow)
Chris Walden's Kurt Marti Suite utilizes the sacred poems of Kurt Marti, a priest whose religious poetry was highly rated. Walden utilizes his big band and the 67 voices of the St. John's Choir for the 12-part suite. While there are occasional solos, including from tenor saxophonist Brandon Fields, altoist Jeff Driskill, and trombonist Bob McChesne...
All About Jazz.com (Jack Bowers)
It's hard to wrap one's arms around this CD by composer/arranger Chris Walden. On the one hand, Walden has coupled his intrepid ensemble of talented southern California sidemen with the 100-member St. John's Choir from Hamburg, Germany (his hometown), to set to music works by the renowned Swiss poet/lyricist Kurt Marti. On the other, the playing ti...
All About Jazz.com (Dan McClenaghan)
The German-born composer/band leader Chris Walden pays the rent with his television and movie work, scoring over thirty feature and television films, in addition to his writing for a variety of musical artists, including?Christopher Cross, Michael Bolton, Sheryl Crow, Paul Anka and Olivia Newton-John. The art of his heart, though, must certainly be...
Still Another Jazz Show (Dick Crockett)
CHRIS WALDEN BIG BAND & THE ST. JOHN'S CHOIR begin this edition of SAJS with the dynamic CHRIS MARTI SUITE. We devoted the first segment to this interesting piece and played selections one through eleven. "Hotel Jesus" features the talented tenor saxophonist Brandon Fields. This solo is brief and spectacular. An indicator of some more to come from ...
Bop 'n DIck's 10 Picks (Dick Crockett)
How can an orchestration based on the verse of Kurt Marti can be so majestic and powerful, especially when the lyrics are sung in German by the St Johns Choir, Hamburg? For someone who doesn't understand the language, there's something more universal here with voice and orchestration with Chris Walden and his arrangements. Walden draws upon his res...
Cadence, Jan-Mar 2008 (Jack Bowers)
Thanks to his enormous success over the past dozen years as a writer/arranger for film, television, and other media, Chris Walden is in a rather enviable position - able to assemble a big band comprised of blue-chip Hollywood studio musicians and couple it with the 100-member St. John's Choir from Hamburg, Germany, to present a musical rendition of...

 

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