It’s taken fifteen years for the 2001 recording “It’s All in the GAME” featuring Doug Richards and The Great American Music Ensemble (aka GAME) to finally see the light of day. Doug Richards founded VCU’s Jazz department. He’s a world renowned Ellington scholar, he’s an accomplished educato,r and his arrangements for big band are unique and masterful. Legendary critic Martin Williams called him “the most original writer for big band since Gil Evans.”
In this segment, you”ll hear an interview with Doug Richards about his musical background and how GAME evolved. He’ll also deconstruct a few of his arrangements. Included are excerpts of In the Mood, Clap Yo Hands, Stardust, Sleepytime Down South, and April in Paris.
Joining GAME on these performances are special guests Rene Marie on vocals, Jon Faddis on trumpet and Joe Kennedy Jr. on violin. There are also solos by the regular members of GAME: John D’earth, Skip Gailes, Marty Nau, and others.
GAME has not been an active ensemble for many years. The release of “It’s All in the GAME” is a welcome reminder of Richards’ talent and creativity. We hope the chance to hear the ensemble in a live setting will materialize.
In the meantime, you can now get a copy of the CD from Jazzed Media Records.