The Widespread Depression Orchestra will be back on the Vinyl Vault this Tuesday with their album “Rockin’ in Rhythm.” The Vault has several WDO albums, but this one is a new acquisition and not previously played. The album was released in 1980 on Phontastic Records, based in Sweden.
The Widespread Depression Orchestra was active from the mid-1970s through the mid-1980s. In an attempt at a bit happier name, the band eventually changed its name to the Widespread Jazz Orchestra, but that was after this album was recorded. It was a 9-piece band dedicated to keeping swing and jump music from the 1930s and 40s alive and kicking.
“Rockin’ in Rhythm” focused on the music of Duke Ellington and featured reed man Bob Wilbur joined as a guest bringing the ensemble to 10 members for that album. Most of the selections are instrumentals, but vibist John Holtzman sang on a few tracks. One of the band members of note was pianist Mike LeDonne who went on to a productive solo career in jazz primarily on organ. Jordan Sandke on trumpet and Dean Nicypher on tenor saxophone have also been members of the New York jazz scene over the years.
Check out “Rockin’ in Rhythm” by the Widespread Depression Orchestra with Geoff Anderson on Tuesday, December 5 at 8:30 pm on KUVO JAZZ.
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