Nightfall offers the best in smooth jazz music, featuring 20 late night laid-back classics. Enjoy our theme of easy-going and unhurried music, combining slower tempos, pretty melodies and superlative solo playing – quite the best way to end an evening as ‘nightfall’ approaches. Mellow heaven!
“I received the CD and was surprised how quickly it got to me. It sounds as if you are there, watching the musicians, really clear, thank you.” Peter Parr, Australia
In retrospect, the swing era seems to have been marked by a kind of musical hedonism. The excitement generated by big bands, the exotic dance hall environments in which they worked, the vivid publicity which they earned, all contributed to the idea that non-stop enjoyment was not only desirable but inevitable. Swing numbers were usually up-tempo, the dancers busily jitterbugging, the bandsmen sometimes outlandish, their road stories helping to sustain the music’s glamorous aura.
Much of this (if not all) is true, of course. Swing-style jazz flourished in America and Europe in the immediate post-depression period, building in popularity as the Second World War loomed so who can blame the fans for their desire to shut out oncoming difficulties? They wanted entertainment and pleasure, and loved the animation and vitality of the best swing bands. For all that, the famous orchestras or instrumentalists of the day knew full well that a diet of non-stop flag-wavers could pall and paced their presentations with slower ballads and blues, often featuring a key soloist who might create a lush version of a show song. Of course, this allowed dancers to smooch, to linger romantically, before the programme changed.
It’s this facet of swing – its ‘laid-back’ aspect in modern parlance – which we celebrate here. Tempos are slower and some smaller groups are given their head, the individual players better able to demonstrate their virtuosity and control. The music still swings, but there’s subtlety and sophistication in these performances as well.