Trombonists are the unsung heroes of the jazz world. Though the instrument may not grace as many frontlines as it did in its pre-bop heyday, trombonists are often hard at work behind the scenes, crafting material for ensembles of every size and stylistic stripe. At least, that’s the thesis put forth by Grammy-winning trombonist-composer Doug Beavers on his new album, the exceptional Art Of The Arrangement, due out Aug. 25 on the ArtistShare label.
The idea for the album grew from an astute observation. At the time of the release of his previous CD, the fantastically trombone-centric Titanes Del Trombón, Beavers took note of the fact that many of the great trombonists of the past were also first-rate arrangers. The realization steered him toward the music that now constitutes his latest release, such as the album’s single, “El Truquito,” which Beavers arranged based on the original by Ismael Rivera. You can listen to that track—in all its low-brass splendor—below. Be sure to pay special attention to the leader’s positively roaring trombone solo.
The new collection features a total of 12 tributes to the greatest Latin jazz and salsa arrangers of our time, including Gil Evans, Ray Santos, Jose Madera, Oscar Hernández, Angel Fernandez, Marty Sheller and Gonzalo Grau. Throughout the history of Latin jazz, and jazz in general, it’s the arrangers who have shaped the music, and quite often their contributions have been overlooked, or ignored altogether. Beavers sets out to change that fact on the ambitious Art Of The Arrangement. DB