Bandleader Stan Kenton was an innovator of a subgenre known as progressive jazz, much-maligned by jazz purists. The style was grandiose and hugely influenced by modernist classical composers, including Igor Stravinsky and Paul Hindemith. Kenton famously performed it with his 49-piece Innovations in Modern Music Orchestra. On his 1953 album, Portraits on Standards, he applies some of his theories to a set of jazz standards. The result is surprisingly sentimental and melodic, as his band’s take on “How High the Moon” shows.
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