The Christian mass has been performed by jazz musicians before, such as Vince Guaraldi's The Grace Cathedral Concert
, Dimitri Matheny's jazz/classical hybrid Spiritu Sancto/the New Millennium Mass
, and Wynton Marsalis's The Abyssinian Mass
, but a fully jazz big band treatment with soloists, chorus, and organ for the Catholic Latin mass is new. Missa Iubeleum Aureum
immediately catches attention with its perfect selection of soloists: Tierney Sutton and Kurt Elling. Composed and arranged by Chris Walden with Schola Cantorum of San Francisco's St. Dominics Catholic Church, the church's digitally-run pipe organ, and the LMR Jazz Orchestra [a division of Long Meadow Ranch enterprises], the 11-movement 37-minute work is beautiful and musically spiritual. The Offertory here is Christopher Marlowe's 1599 poem "The Passionate Shepherd to His Love," and Elling and Sutton render it most romantically. [This works so well that I hope that Elling and Sutton will collaborate in the future with a recording of duets.] Instrumental soloists: Gloria, trombonist Michael Davis; Communion, guitarist Brian Nova and saxophonist Mary Fettig; and Thanks Be To God, trombonist Jon Brummel. This short but sweet recording will warm the heart.