Infinitely adaptable, DeMerle's power and rhythmic elasticity underlines his bold presence and command of modern jazz drumming.
By the time of Spectrum, Les DeMerle's dynamic 1969 United Artists debut album, Les was a known, prodigious young drumming talent who had been wowing audiences through club and TV performances since he was a teen. Unheard at the time was a 1967 recording of his band, Sound 67, which was lost in the shuffle at Atlantic Records, never to see the light of day. The acetates that followed DeMerle around for the last 56 years reveal a 20-year old dynamo who knew talent, showmanship, and the sounds of his times. With a collection of crack arrangements by Frank Foster & Bob Hammer, channeling the latest grooves of Ramsey Lewis and Cannonball Adderley, balanced with sublime pop hits and burning swingers, Les sculpted his 5-piece band into a musical juggernaut. Featuring Randy Brecker on trumpet - in what would have been his first featured recording - and the voice of rock diva, Genya Ravan, Once in a Lifetime is an amazing time capsule find, containing great hints of the career DeMerle would unfurl over the coming decades.
1. Come Back to Me 2:58
2. Feelin' Good 3:42
3. On a Clear Day 2:18
4. Raunchy Rita 4:16
5. Signifyin' 7:14
6. Alfie 3:51
7. Sticks 3:28
8. That's Life 3:31
9. Once in a Lifetime 4:14
10. Taking a Chance on Love 2:28
Les DeMerle - drums
Randy Brecker - trumpet, flugelhorn
Alan Gauvin - alto sax
Danny Sandridge - piano
Terry Plumeri - bass
Lanny Morgan - alto sax, flute
Mel Olman - piano
Jack Greg - bass
Genya Ravan - vocals
Les DeMerle - percussion
Rosemary Clooney - vocals
Mike Douglas TV Show Band
Produced by Les DeMerle and Bonnie Eisele
for Music Unlimited Prod, Amelia Island, FL
Recorded by Don Seat
at Peer Southern Music, NYC, 1967
Mastered by Jeff Alford & Denny LeRoux
at Storm Studios, Jacksonville, FL
Liner Notes: Scott Yanow
Photography: Popsie Randolph, Jack Bradley,
Classic Jazz Visions, Fortune Monte
Cover Design & Layout by John Bishop
Dusty Grooves (Editor)
Rare lost work from funky drummer Les DeMerle – a set of tracks that were recorded for Atlantic Records in 1967, two years before DeMerle's classic Spectrum album – yet which finally appear here for the first time ever! Les is rock-solid, right from the start – definitely one of those younger players really helping to shift the sound of the l ...
Jazz Weekly (George W Harris)
Back in 1967, the careers of both drummer Les DeMerle and trumpeter Randy Brecker were just beginning, and this recently discovered album has the two together along with a rotating team of Lanny Morgan/asfl, Alan Gauvin/as, Terry Plumeri-Jack Greg/b and Genya Ravan/voc. DeMarle is snappy on the snares along with Brecker and Gauvin on Jazz Messenger ...
All About Jazz (Jack Bowers)
Drummer Les DeMerle recorded his first album, Once in a Lifetime, when he was a twenty-year-old prodigy in 1967. However, as is sometimes true in the music business, the album was lost in the shuffle at Atlantic Records and sat gathering dust until someone had the good sense to retrieve and release it some fifty-six years later. As the saying goes, ...
Jazz'halo (Belgium) (Georges Tonla Briquet)
Young drummer who immediately scored successes from his teenage years, but whose debut with his group was shelved for inexplicable reasons. That, in a nutshell, is the story behind this unreleased recording. However, a number of big names contributed to this. Among them Randy Brecker, Rosemary Clooney and the popular rock singer Genya Ravan (Gol ...
Cedric Songs (Cedric Hendrix)
Within two measures, no doubt remains that Les DeMerle's Once in a Lifetime is a jazz drummer's record. But despite its burning intensity, put aside the desire to compare this drummer with Buddy Rich when a snare drum roll is played. DeMerle is his own drummer, with a groove that swings hard regardless of the song's tempo. This album has gone unkno ...
Take Effect (Tom Haugen)
The esteemed drummer Les DeMerle laid down this album with his band, Sound 67, way back in 1967, and here it's finally released after being lost in the shuffle at Atlantic Records. "Come Back To Me" starts the listen with DeMerle's drumming acrobatics alongside Randy Brecker's bright trumpet and Danny Sandridge's swift keys, and "Feelin' Good" f ...