Jazz Suite for Brass Quintet

The Jazz Suite for Brass Quintet by Alec Wilder, while a really enjoyable listen, poses a bit of a problem for a musical purist, and not because it mixes jazz into classical music. The suite was actually compiled in 1996 by Robert Levy, sixteen years after Wilder’s death, from various movements in Wilder’s eight (count ‘em!) brass quintets. But, given that as of yet no group has tackled the complete cycle, we’ll have to be content with these wonderfully idiomatic miniatures, presented here in totally simpatico performances featuring Levy surrounded by other top players (Chris Gekker, David Jolley, Sam Pilafian and the great Dave Taylor). If any of you listening out there play in a brass quintet, here’s a dream project waiting for you!

—FJO