Song of the Day: The Flying Horse Big Band, “Gregory Is Here”

On their eighth album, The Flying Horse Big Band celebrate the enduring legacy of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers.

The Flying Horse Big Band, hailing from the jazz studies program at the University of Central Florida, is led by the talented saxophonist and professor Jeff Rupert. Renowned for their performances at prestigious music festivals and concert halls, they have also garnered acclaim through numerous recordings. Their eighth full-length release, A Message from The Flying Horse Big Band, is an effervescent homage to the timeless legacy of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers.

Its program features a vibrant and diverse array of compositions by giants like Horace Silver, Benny Golson, Wayne Shorter, Cedar Walton and Hank Mobley, expertly rescored for a large ensemble. Notably, former Jazz Messenger Michael Mossman contributes arrangements to the album, including for the big band’s standout rendition of Silver’s “Gregory Is Here,” updating the original composition’s infectious energy and the graceful sophistication of its harmony and key changes.

Listen to “Gregory Is Here” by The Flying Horse Big Band via the player below. Their new album, A Message from The Flying Horse Big Band, was released on November 27, 2023, via Flying Horse Records. Order it here.

Featured photo by Tony Firriolo.

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