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Strings Of Pearls

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"Totally Swing!"
14 danceable selections
Big--band--style instrumentals from classic jump to slow groove, plus swingin' vocals

Released April 2000.
CD $15, Cassette $12

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ALBUM CONTENTS

"Totally Swing!"

1. OUT OF NOWHERE
Gimme that big band beat

8. THE GLORY OF LOVE
Gal singer in a slow groove

2. FEVER
Girl vocal with cool bass, hot horns

9. I'M GONNA SIT RIGHT DOWN AND WRITE MYSELF A LETTER
Guy cooks on vocal and sax
3. IN THE MOOD
Fresh take on Glen Miller's Hit

10. SATIN DOLL
Welcome to the Cotton Club
4. NICE 'N' EASY
Guy sings to a Basie beat
11. IT COULD HAPPEN TO YOU
Guy singer on choice tune
5. CHATTANOOGA CHOO CHOO
All aboard for this Miller classic
12. DEEP PURPLE
From the Astor Hotel Roof . . .
6. WHO'S SORRY NOW
Bouncy girl vocal
13. ALMOST LIKE BEING IN LOVE
Gal singer swings Broadway hit
7. '720' IN THE BOOKS
Up--Tempo big band favorite

14. TWO O'CLOCK JUMP
Classic jump swing, spiced by jazz

This album is dedicated to the people of China, for their warm response and hospitality during our march 1999 tour.

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MUSICIANS    
Don Conway conducting

Don Conway, Leader and music director, Alto saxophones, and vocals

Connie Anne Conway, Manager, Vocals and piano
Walter Cross, Tenor saxophone
Drummer
John Quist, Trumpet
Wilson Winner, Trombone
Clemens Wabra, Guitar
Vern Holme, Bass
George Ballantyne, Drums

Program Notes for "Totally Swing!"

Swing's the thing in this second album from Don Conway's compact big band. Danceable from begining to end, the album carries forward the rich swing tradition of the '40s and 50s.

String of Pearls has been in the vanguard of the swing renaissance in the San Francisco bay area, where the band has made over 100 public appearances at festivals, nightclubs, concerts, and dances.

The group's previous album, "Makin' Whoopee!" (1997), is being played on swing radio programs around the nation and overseas. And in March 1999, String of Pearls spent two weeks in China in an 11-performance tour sponsored by two Beijing-based cultural exchange organizations.

String of Pearls was formed in 1991 by saxophonist and singer Don Conway. The band's octet format was inspired by the earlier mid-size ensembles of Shorty Rogers, Miles Davis, Dave Pell, and Lennie Niehaus. Such groups combine the advantages of a big band (a full rhythm section and horn ensemble work) with those of a jazz combo (plenty of improvisation). In addition, Pearls features vocals by Don and pianist Connie Anne.

This album presents 14 gig-tested swing numbers, vocal as well as instrumental, from slow groove to classic jump, and big-band to Broadway and pop. While the tunes are standards, the arrangements--mainly by Dave Wolpe--offer freshened harmonies, rhythmic suprises, and space for original jazz. The dynamic Swing tradition demands no less!   Enjoy.

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