The Ed Palermo Big Band: Oh No! Not Jazz!! (2014)

Oh No! Not Jazz!!

Track list:

CD 1 – Zappa:
01. Inca Roads (feat. Napoleon Murphy Brock)
02. The Uncle Meat Variations
03. Little Umbrellas
04. The Dog Breath Variations
05. Chunga’s Revenge
06. Lumpy Gravy
07. The Black Page #2
08. America Drinks and Goes Home (feat. Mike James)

CD 2 – Palermo:
09. Moosh
10. Prelude To an Insult
11. Why Is the Doctor Barking?
12. Prelude To a Catastrophe
13. A Catastrophe (is just around the corner)
14. Let’s Reproduce
15. An Escape Nonetheless
16. Nostalgia Revisited (for Susan)
17. The Insult
18. Good Night, Everybody! God Love Ya!
19. She’s So Heavy


Ed Palermo: bandleader, arranger, composer, alto sax
Paul Adamy: electric bass, webmeister, godsend
Ray Marchica: drums, kindness
Bob Quaranta: acoustic piano + adorable twin daughters, one of which prefers dental surgery to the EPBB
Ted Kooshian: electrified keyboards, sparkplug management
Bruce McDaniel: guitar, vocals, aces in the brain game
Katie Jacoby: violin, perky youthfulness
Cliff Lyons: lead alto sax, clarinet, Troy, NY dregs of society
Phil Chester: 2nd alto sax, flute, piccolo, soprano sax, Texas swagger
Bill Straub: lead tenor sax, clarinet, soprano sax solo on “An Escape Nonetheless,” five mouths to feed on a sax player’s salary
Ben Kono: 2nd tenor sax, flute, oboe, devilish good looks but only by comparison to the rest of the EPBB
Barbara Cifelli: baritone sax, Eb mutant clarinet, bass clarinet, angelic good looks but only by comparison to Ben Kono
Charles Gordon: lead trombone, Jewish, but only in comparison to Ben Kono and Barbara Cifelli
Joe Fiedler: 2nd trombone, but much taller than the lead trombone player
Matt Ingman: bass trombone, babe-magnet tuba player
Ronnie Buttacavoli: lead trumpet, devout Catholic but not according to the nun he slapped as a child
John Hines: 2nd trumpet, at least he never hit a nun
Bonnie Buttacavoli: 3rd trumpet, cousin of the devout Catholic but refuses to confess to that transgression
Bonnie Hines: 4th trumpet, cousin of the 2nd trumpet player, confesses often but only of Ronnie Buttacavoli’s sins

Special Guests:
Napoleon Murphy Brock: vocals on “Inca Roads”
John Palermo: mandolin on “The Black Page,” “Dog Breath Variations,” “Inca Roads,” “Let’s Reproduce,” “Lumpy Gravy” and “Prelude To a Catastrophe”
Gary Schreiner: accordion on “Chunga’s Revenge”
Mike James: vocals, complaints, and liver spots on “America Drinks” and “Good Night, Everybody”

Producer: Bruce McDaniel

Executive producer: The sax monster who gobbled up Katie Jacoby on the back cover of this CD. If I give you more royalties, can we have Katie back? Just puke her back up.

Recorded at Peaceful Waters Studio.
Engineer: Wayne Warnecke

Mixing, additional engineering, and mastering by Bruce McDaniel at Rock Ridge Recording.

Oh No! Not Jazz!! – booklet (pdf 5.35MB)
Artwork by Nancy Palermo.
Photos: all selfies by the Ed Palermo Big Band.

Tracks #1-8:
Compositions by Frank Zappa.
Arranged by Ed Palermo

Tracks #9-19:
Compositions by Ed Palermo except:
“Moosh” (David Leone)
“She’s So Heavy” (Lennon & McCartney)
Arranged by Ed Palermo

Released: February, 2014
Label: Cuneiform Records


“Palermo developed these charts during years of live shows with these musicians, and their mastery of the material shows in the performances, which turn on a dime yet feel fierce with spontaneous invention…. Palermo’s arrangements and these performances are precise, dedicated, raucous and incisive—just like Zappa himself.”  – JazzTimes

The Ed Palermo Big Band is led by alto saxist and arranger Ed Palermo; he has had this big band with much of the same personnel for over 30 years, which is a hugely impressive feat in itself, and has had his band performing the music of Frank Zappa for 20 years.

The band is an 18-piece ensemble of five woodwind players, four trumpeters, three trombonists, two keyboardists, guitar, violin, bass and drum. There are a number of ensembles performing the music of Frank Zappa, who, 20 years after his death, is now recognized as one of the greatest American composers of the 20th century, but no one does it with the ease, skill and originality that Ed and his band do!

‘Oh No! Not Jazz!!’ consists of two albums of musical performances. The first album (tracks 1-8) further explores Ed’s distinctive, big band interpretations of the music of Frank Zappa and for the most part, he concentrates here on Frank’s initial burst of creative works from original Mothers Of Invention era of 1966-1970. In addition, two notable pieces are performed here. One of Frank’s most loved works, Inca Roads, with a vocal by guest Napoleon Murphy Brock contrasts with one of his most ‘notoriously difficult’ works, The Black Page #2. All of the performances and arrangements of these great pieces are fun, musically witty and masterful. The second album (tracks 9-19) features Ed’s own colorful compositions, which are here featured on a recording for the 1st time in over 25 years!

This double album shows that despite the financial and practical difficulties of running a large sized band, that the very fact that there are so many musical voices in a big band allows for showcasing arrangements better than any other vehicle. This is an exciting listen for fans of Frank Zappa and all adventurous rock and jazz music.