Since the band’s eponymous 1981 debut album, Yellowjackets has consistently forged ahead with innovative and challenging artistic statements. For Jackets XL, its 25th album and fourth for Mack Avenue Music Group, the band continues to stretch and reinvent itself with an exciting, full-bodied collaboration with the superb WDR Big Band of Cologne, Germany. The project combines the shapeshifting, multiple GRAMMY® Award-winning quartet with the renowned big band, re-imagining well-known band originals with dynamic new arrangements that feature twists and turns, textures and colors, moving harmonies and bold solos.
“This band has never been one to rest on its laurels,” says tenor saxophonist/EWI player Bob Mintzer, a Yellowjacket since 1990 and the WDR Big Band principal conductor since 2016. “The Yellowjackets are very adept at reinventing. The four of us are the most adaptable musicians I’ve ever worked with. Any setting, any style, we know we can do it. As for the WDR, they’re one of the best large jazz ensembles in the world. I knew the two groups would make for a nice marriage.” The band also comprises founder, keyboardist Russell Ferrante, drummer Will Kennedy and electric bassist Dane Alderson in his third recording for the group.
We’re including their new track “One Day” in our Weekly Discover Playlist for October 5, which also includes new tunes from GoGo Penguin, Dave Koz, Leslie Odom Jr., Brianna Thomas and more.
As writer Whitney Balliett once said, “Jazz is the sound of surprise.” Our Weekly Discover playlist will take your ears to new places with the latest sounds from your favorite artists — and some you should definitely get to know. Catch up on albums that came out over the weekend, newly released singles and other tunes that may have flown under your radar. Stream now on Spotify or on your favorite music service using the links below.
Yellowjackets, WDR Big Band
Last Words – Alternate Version
All I Want
Dave Koz, Paul Jackson, Jr.
Cold (feat. Sia)
Leslie Odom Jr., Sia
Day After Day
Gideon King & City Blog
Sing a Song of Songs
Nick Finzer, Reggie Chapman, Quincy Davis
Taking A Chance On Love – Live
Love In Berlin
Chick Talks Portraits – Live in Paris / 2018
September Morn – Radio Edit
Till Brönner, Bob James
Tune Up – VARA Studio 5, Hilversum, the Netherlands, May 5, 1967
Sonny Rollins, Ruud Jacobs, Han Bennink
Since I Fell for You
The Brianna Thomas Band
Faith Leap – Live
Right Now! Live at the Village Vanguard