Dennis Rollins Badbone

COMPOSERS: Dennis Rollins Badbone
LABELS: Raestar Records
ALBUM TITLE: Dennis Rollins Badbone & Co
WORKS: Big Night Out!
PERFORMER: Dennis Rollins (trombone); Badbone
Badbone’s hugely enjoyable third album delivers everything the previous two promised. Too much contemporary jazz confuses earnestness with seriousness, but Rollins, whether playing with the London Community Gospel Choir, Jazz Jamaica or Jamiroquai, exudes enjoyment. Big Night Out! opens waggishly with the sound of a stylus being dropped onto vinyl and thereafter it’s a feast of fun. ‘Sweet Tone Bone’, incorporates a rap tribute to master jazz trombonists Kid Ory, Miff Mole and Tricky Sam Nanton, but it’s soon clear that Rollins’s heroes also include James Brown associate Fred Wesley and Skatalite Don Drummond. Although Badbone targets the dance-floor, the soloists play with considerable subtlety and elegance and are well-served by Rollins’s beguiling compositions. Rollins demonstrates as much imagination and facility on classic jazz-orientated pieces like ‘Miracle You’ as on the funkadelic numbers and ‘Head Rush’, which recalls the electro-jazz of Miles Davis’s Bitches Brew. Barry Witherden