I started listening to this band in the 50's and their music sounds as good today as it did then. I have a lot of these recordings on vinyl but no longer have the equipment have the equipment to play them.
The Sauter-Finegan Orchestra was formed during the Fifties by Eddie Sauter and Bill Finegan, two experienced big band arrangers who brought forth a new inventive sound via their startling arrangements created for the innovative instrumentation of kazoo, piccolo, flute, oboe, bass clarinet, harp, English horn, recorder, tuba, glockenspiel and tympani. THE DOODLETOWN FIFERS became a huge hit, followed by NINA NEVER KNEW and THE MOON IS BLUE but as a touring outfit, the band became financially insolvent during the Fifties and was wound up in 1957.
Fortunately, the band's recorded work continued via recordings with this reissue featuring two United Artists stereo albums recorded during 1960/61 and the outcome is fresh, modern and startling in conception. THE RETURN OF THE DOODLETOWN FIFERS is a “Greatest Hits” collection with recreations of that title number plus MIDNIGHT SLEIGHRIDE, MOONLIGHT ON THE GANGES and nine other celebrated choices. The POP CONCERT selections take a more unfamiliar stance and jumps headlong into a programme of current pops RAMA-LAMA DING DONG, THE BILBAO SONG, BLUE MOON and THAT OLD BLACK MAGIC based on the hits enjoyed by vocal groups and singers like Andy Williams, Louis Prima & Keely Smith. As such, the refreshing big band approach makes them instrumental delights and the addition of standards I’VE TOLD EVERY LITTLE STAR and YOU CAN DEPEND ON ME successfully capture mood with originality.
With excellent full-blooded remastered sound, Sepia backs up this reissue with appropriate notes and additional information about the albums and involved personnel. In other words a real cracker reissue for all big band enthusiasts and others who revere the genius of the Sauter-Finegan Orchestra.
Sauter/Finegan were ground breaking when they created and played their music and the end result was hauntingly exciting. I am pleased to have not one but two of their albums on this CD. If you consider that many of us were listening to old radio broadcasts of this band where the resultant sound quality was not so hot and now these recordings on CD. Well it is really for many a dream come true. If you remember Alan Dell from the radio back in the 1980s and 1990s this was one of his personal favourite set up's. Attractive artwork and liner notes. Price wise another bargain.