Every so often there is a recording that transcends its category. Maynard Fergeson's "Chameleon" is one of these. While it's basically a jazz CD, the band also delves into - and handles very well - several different styles. The highlights include a blazing rendition of Chick Corea's "La Fiesta," Stevie Wonder's "Livin' for the City," the swing classic "I Can't Get Started" and the Herbie Hancock-penned title song, which demonstrates the true power a big band can have.
What makes the recording so great is the fact that although the songs are diverse, they all have the same sharp, exciting sound of Fergeson's big band and his famous high-note trumpet, as well as his trumpet-like Superbone. This is a disc that should appeal to pretty much any fan of music, with enough energy to convert any non-believers. The musicianship is tight and crisp; the songs are well selected and beautifully arranged. What else could we ask for? n
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.