Saturday, September 08, 2018

UMO Jazz Orchestra featuring Alli Ikonen: Blue Notes on Silver Screen (concert)

Ville Vannemaa (tenor sax), Aili Ikonen, Heikki Tuhkanen (trombone), Mikko Pettinen (trumpet).

Savoy Theatre, Helsinki, 8 Sep 2018

Kirmo Lintinen, conductor and music programmer
Aili Ikonen, vocals

Teemu Mattsson, lead trumpet
Timo Paasonen
Tomi Nikku
Tero Saarti

Heikki Tuhkanen
Mikko Mustonen
Pekka Laukkanen
Mikael Långbacka, bass trombone

Jouni Järvelä, 1. alto saxophone
Mikko Mäkinen, 2. alto saxophone
Ville Vannemaa, 1. tenor saxophone
Olli Ojajärvi, 2. tenor saxophone
Pepa Päivinen, baritone saxophone

Seppo Kantonen, piano, electric piano
Vesa Ojaniemi, bass
Jaska Lukkarinen, drums
Jarmo Saari, guitar
Panu Savolainen, percussions

1. A Streetcar Named Desire [Viettelysten vaunu], 1951, D: Elia Kazan
– Four Deuces / Blanche, 5:30 (Alex North)
– Ville Vannemaa, cl; Jouni Järvelä, asax; Heikki Tuhkanen, trb

2. Touch of Evil [Pahan kosketus], 1958, D: Orson Welles
– Touch of Evil Suite 5:40 (Henry Mancini)
– Jouni Järvelä, asax

3. Singin' in the Rain [Laulavat sadepisarat], 1952, D: Stanley Donen & Gene Kelly
– Singin' in the Rain, 5:00 (Nacio Herb Brown, lyr. Arthur Freed, arr. Teemu Takanen)
– Aili Ikonen, voc; Ville Vannemaa, fl; Panu Savolainen, vibes

4. West Side Story, musical 1957, motion picture 1961, D: Jerome Robbins & Robert Wise
Something's Coming, 2:20 (Leonard Bernstein, lyr. Stephen Sondheim, arr. Mikko Hassinen)
– Aili Ikonen, voc.

5. Anatomy of a Murder [Erään murhan anatomia], 1959, D: Otto Preminger
– Anatomy of a Murder (Soundtrack Suite), 10:00 (Duke Ellington & Billy Strayhorn)
– Jouni Järvelä, asax; Ville Vannemaa, cl; Pepa Päivinen, bar.sax; Seppo Kantonen, p; Tomi Nikku,; Olli Ojajärvi, tsax; Teemu Mattsson, lead-tr

6. Shadows [Varjoja], 1959, D: John Cassavetes
Strollin', 5:30 (Charles Mingus, lyr. George Gordon)
– Aili Ikonen, voc; Tero Saarti, tr; Ville Vannemaa, tsax; Vesa Ojaniemi, b

7. Orfeu Negro [Musta Orfeus], 1959, D: Marcel Camus
Manha de Carnaval (A Day in the Life of a Fool) / Yön väistyessä, 4:00 (Luiz Bonfá, engl. lyr. Carl Sigman, arr. Kirmo Lintinen)
– Aili Ikonen, voc

8. Dr. No [Salainen agentti 007 ja tohtori No], 1962, D: Terence Young
James Bond Theme, 2:00 (Monty Norman)
– Jarmo Saari, el. guit

9. The Pink Panther [Vaaleanpunainen pantteri], 1963, D: Blake Edwards
The Pink Panther Theme, 4:10 (Henry Mancini)
– Ville Vannemaa, tsax; Timo Paasonen, tr

10. The Naked Gun [Mies ja alaston ase], 1988, D: David Zucker
The Naked Gun Theme, 2:00 (Ira Newborn)

11. Rosemary's Baby [Rosemaryn painajainen], 1968, D: Roman Polanski
– Rosemary's Baby Main Theme, 2:45 (Krzysztof Komeda)
– Aili Ikonen, voc

12. Bullitt, 1968, D: Peter Yates
– Bullitt, Main Title, 2:30 (Lalo Schifrin)
– Jarmo Saari, el. guit

13. The Getaway [Pakotie], 1972, D: Sam Peckinpah
– Theme From "The Getaway", 3:00 (Quincy Jones)
– Timo Paasonen, tr

14. ”Powerhouse” has been played in 65 films in 1937–2010, especially in 1943–62 in dozens of short animations starring Bugs Bunny, Porky Pig, and Daffy Duck, and also in several more recent tv series such as Ren and Stimpy and The Simpsons.
– Powerhouse, 2:40 (Raymond Scott)

15. Toy Story [Toy Story – Leluelämää], 1995, D: John Lasseter
You've Got a Friend in Me, 2:00 (Randy Newman)
– Aili Ikonen, voc

16. The Incredibles [Ihmeperhe], 2004, D: Brad Bird
– The Incredibles Suite, 2:35 (Michael Giacchino)


17. West Side Story, musical 1957, motion picture 1961, D: Jerome Robbins & Robert Wise
Mambo, 3:00 (Leonard Bernstein, arr. Michael Philip Mossman)

18. The Happy Ending [Myötä- ja vastoinkäymisissä], 1969, D: Richard Brooks
– What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life? [Luonasi sun], 3:30 (Michel Legrand, Finnish lyr. Hector, arr. Janne Toivonen)
– Aili Ikonen, voc; Tero Saarti,

Engrossing concert of film music performed by UMO Jazz Orchestra at the strength of 18. Even the most familiar tunes sounded fresh and original performed live. I was the presenter but also the most privileged audience member since I was also able to follow the rehearsals. They started well and kept getting better.

Many of the selections are familiar from the orchestra's previous concerts. Among the delightful novelties was Raymond Scott's "Powerhouse", an animation mainstay and a fiendish earworm, probably not an easy track for the orchestra to play.

Aili Ikonen's interpretations were superb for instance in Rosemary's song without words, Krzysztof Komeda's lullaby theme from Rosemary's Baby. Such a gentle interpretation is actually more ominous and haunting than a traditional one. Her voice conveyed motherly love while Seppo Kantonen's electric piano was the voice of the Devil. The interplay was magical.

They saved the best for the last. There are many interpretations by the greatest singers of Michel Legrand's "What Are You Doing the Rest of Your Life?", from Frank Sinatra to Barbra Streisand and Dusty Springfield. But this tender and passionate interpretation by Aili Ikonen is the greatest I know. It also helped that there are no strings in this orchestration. Strings sometimes bring a clichéd touch to an arrangement.

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