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Phil Freeman on Doug Webb “Swing Shift”…

Also in 2009, on April 24 to be precise, saxophonist Doug Webb went into Entourage Studios in North Hollywood, California with bassist Stanley Clarke (yes, that one) and drummer Gerry Gibbs. Three different pianists—Joe BaggMahesh Balasooriya and Larry Goldings—stopped by for a few hours each. The trio and its guest pianists recorded nearly 40 songs that day, many of them standards but others written by Webb or Clarke. Eight were released on 2009′s Midnight, eight more on 2010′s Renovations, and six more (one of them the 22-minute “Patagonia Suite”) on Swing Shift, the fiercest and most free of the series to date.

Webb may not be particularly famous, but his saxophone sound is one of the most widely heard on Earth: you see, he’s the “voice” ofLisa Simpson on The Simpsons. All those little solos in the opening credits? Webb. (I’ve thought for years that someone should string all of those together into one long piece—call it the “Lisa Simpson Concerto for Saxophone” or something similar. Now that I know who played them all, the idea seems even more appealing.) The first two volumes in this apparently ongoing series were much more romantic and relaxed than this one; they featured renditions of dusty relics like “Fly Me to the Moon,” “You Go to My Head,” “I Can’t Get Started,” “Satin Doll,” “They Can’t Take That Away from Me,” and the like, all swinging with great power and grace but little fervor. Indeed, at their mellowest moments, these albums would fit comfortably alongside the work of Charlie Haden’s Quartet West. But Swing Shift is a very different animal. It’s got the shortest track of the trilogy, “Rizone,” a 2:40 sax-and-drums workout somewhere between John Coltrane‘s “Countdown” from Giant Steps and Charles Gayle‘s Touchin’ On Trane, but it’s also got the longest by far, the aforementioned “Patagonia Suite,” on which Webb starts out playing soprano, but after giving Clarke and Gibbs a moment or two to express themselves, the latter man heading into almost William Parker-ish string-yanking territory, returns on tenor with some fierce, even discordant blowing that would make even David S. Ware lift his head and take notice. This is no mere post-bop collection of standards; Swing Shift proves that Webb and his bandmates can speak any dialect of the family of languages known collectively as jazz, and do so with fluency and undiminished expressive power. Highly recommended to those who want to witness real adventure, paired with undeniable swing.

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John Barron at The Jazz Word weighs in on Doug Webb “Swing Shift”…

Doug Webb – Swing Shift

2011 Posi-Tone

Los Angeles-based saxophonist Doug Webb delivers a muscular set of high-end jam session jazz on Swing Shift, his third release of material taken from a marathon recording session in April, 2009. Along with bass legend Stanley Clarke and drummer Gerry Gibbs, Webb invites a trio of guest pianists to augment the disc’s six tracks of original and familiar pieces.

The lengthy “Patagonia Suite” finds Webb and company in a Coltrane frame of mind, with extended modal workouts and free-form excursions. The unrelenting and highly responsive rhythm section of Clarke and Gibbs, on full display here, propels Webb’s command of both soprano and tenor. The veteran woodwind man of countless studio sessions displays acute knowledge of the jazz saxophone lineage. “Patagonia Suite” and Frank Foster’s “Simone” also feature jaw-dropping piano solos from Mahesh Balasooriya.

Larry Goldings takes over the piano chair for Mal Waldron’s “Soul Eyes,” swinging hard and settling into a fiery up-tempo groove with Clarke, whose bass presence is characteristically larger-than-life throughout the recording. A soulful, straight-ahead reading of “Where or When” features the stripped-down duo of Webb and pianist Joe Bagg.

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Some nice press for Doug Webb…

On Saturday, Nov. 5 at 7:00 p.m., noted jazz saxophonist Doug Webb gave a free concert at the Pollock Theatre at College of the Desert, which the Arts Department announced was sold out.

Student Rafael Rodriguez, a music major at COD, who had the opportunity to play with Webb in COD’s jazz ensemble, described  it as one of his best musical experiences and that it was refreshing to play with such a great musician. Rodriguez and the student jazz ensemble worked together the day of the concert to prepare the pieces they were to play. He mentioned that he did not feel rushed or pressured since Webb is such a confident and experienced musician, and this attitude rubbed off on the jazz ensemble.

The concert amazed him, the songs had strong melody points and he could feel that the audience was really into the music. This has come a long way since jazz groups and big band style was introduced at COD by Dr. Anthony Fesmire, “The concerts are always free!” he exclaimed. Rodriguez has one suggestions for the college, he hopes COD will provide more enlightening experiences like this and gives a special thanks to Dr. Fesmire.

Mikael Jacobson, a music faculty member and bass player, told The Chaparral it was a real treat to play with Doug Webb, “he’s a world class artist, and among the best musicians I’ve accompanied onstage,” he said. Jacobson met Webb for the first time 90 minutes before the concert started. He said Webb learned difficult music by ear with the trio in 45 minutes, which he said was ‘insane.’ In Jacobson’s opinion, the most important thing about the concert was the inclusion of the COD Jazz Ensemble. “Not only did it give the students an opportunity to play with a master, it exposed the capacity house to what’s going on at COD. I’m not sure many people outside of COD knew we had a Jazz band of this caliber. My parents have already put the next Jazz Ensemble concert on their calendar.”

Being able to bring Doug Webb to COD and the desert community was huge. The music most certainly meant different things to different people.  As he spoke to a few people after the concert, reactions ranged from “That was unbelievable!” to “The music went over my head!”

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Doug Webb’s New Renovations Takes It Up a Notch

Last summer, jazz saxophonist Doug Webb released an entertainingly trad album titled Midnight. This new one, from the same session, is called Renovations. If we’re in luck, maybe we’ll live to see them reissued together as Midnight Renovations. Intriguing title, huh?

This one is a lot more upbeat, occasionally pretty intense. Buckle your seatbelt – bet you’ve never heard as energetic a version of Satin Doll as the one that has the band jumping out of their socks as animatedly as they do for seven minutes and change here. Besides Webb on tenor, there’s Joe Bagg on piano,Stanley Clarke on upright bass and Gerry Gibbs on drums. Larry Goldings’ casually rippling, summery piano provides an apt backdrop for the languid soprano sax lines on a swaying midtempo verison of Then I’ll Be Tired of You – and his organ background comes through fluid and concise, a long solo taking everything up to a crescendo that holds back just thisshort of joyous. An especially amped version Vernon Duke’s hit I Can’t Get Started, from the long-forgotten film Follies of 1936, has Webb charging hard alongside Mahesh Balasooriya’s express-train piano.

With Goldings manning the throttle again, a tensely swinging I’ve Never Been in Love Before contrasts with Webb’s long, comfortable runway landing, and then brings in some genial blues with the piano. They take Nat Cole’s You’ve Changed doublespeed at just the right random moment; Gershwin’s They Can’t Take That Away from Me, the bluesiest tune here, is also unsurprisingly the most rustic.

Toots Thielemans’ Bluesette is reincarnated, stripped down to what’s basically a rapidfire two-chord jam, Webb’s soprano sax taking a clarinet-like tone, Balasooriya spinning off some wildfire cascades to Webb who takes them even higher: it’s a triumphant pinnacle in an unlikely setting, more than hinting at how much further outside they might be capable of going if they went on longer. The album’s closing cut, Henry Mancini’s Slow Hot Wind – now there’s a title for the moment, huh? – is sort of the mirror image of that, slowly pulsing and sultry, with a geniunely fluid, relaxed solo by Clarke where he doesn’t overvibrato it, Webb’s tenor pushing the caravan along with a stream of eighth notes, Goldings’ dynamics refusing to let the suspense go too far one way or another, Webb finally joining him and they tumble into the vortex. It’s another welcome out-of-control moment – Lisa Simpson, eat your heart out. If you’re wondering what that’s all about, Webb voices her sax parts on the tv show. This one’s out now on Posi-tone.


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Here’s a new All About Jazz feature article about Posi-Tone Records!!!

When Posi-Tone Records founder Marc Free was growing up, he looked forward to each new record purchase, cherishing the cover artwork, devouring the liner notes and most of all, feasting on the music. He came to love the music and albums issued by iconic labels such as Blue Note and Impulse!, knowing that even if he hadn’t heard of the artist, it was likely to be a quality recording by a great musician.

And when Free launched Posi-Tone in 1994, he made those remembrances his business plan.

“I hadn’t intended it; it wasn’t my dream,” says Free of the company’s founding. “It was kind of an outgrowth of other things.”

Technically, he started his record-producing career when he built a studio in his mother’s house, ala Rudy Van Gelder, the Blue Note engineering master whose work set the standard for sound and quality in the 1950s. Free had even hoped to make a documentary on Van Gelder at one point, conducting interviews and gathering research, but the project ultimately fell apart.

“He didn’t think a documentary was the right way to tell the story and he never gave me the permission to do it,” says Free.

A jazz guitarist, Free used his studio space to record friends and other musicians whose music he enjoyed. A chance to record multi-instrumentalist Sam Rivers performing at Los Angeles’ Jazz Bakery in 2002 led to a decision to turn the underground label into a “real business.”

“We try to make records we want to listen to,” he says.

At a time many labels struggle to find a niche, Posi-Tone has emerged with a solid lineup of well-crafted recordings, packaged in distinctive cardboard sleeves. Rather than focus on a particular genre of music, Posi-Tone’s stable of artists are picked by Free and partner/engineer Nick O’Toole.

“What we decided to do was go out to New York three or four times per year to scout for talent,” Free says. “That’s where the musicians who are more serious about making a career in jazz are.”

When a potential Posi-Tone artist is found, Free says the label will record them in a New York studio, such as Acoustic Recording Brooklyn or System 2 studios, also in Brooklyn. The masters are then taken to Los Angeles for post-production work.

This method has connected the label to a diverse collection of musicians, including saxophonist Sarah Manning, trombonist Alan Ferber and trumpeter Jim Rotondi. Free notes he doesn’t sign artists to long-term deals, and allows them to retain all of the publishing rights to their music.

“I can’t tell you how many people in the recording business told me I was crazy,” he says. “[One record company executive] said, ‘your roster of artists and publishing rights is what you build your business on.’ And I said, ‘No, my label’s reputation is what I’m building my business on.'”

Which, Free says, strikes at the biggest hurdle facing new artists and new labels in today’s marketplace: reissues. A quick look at the upcoming releases page on AAJ shows a deluge of reissued jazz recordings every month, with new CDs which repackage and reissue works by everyone from bandleader Artie Shaw to saxophonist Zoot Sims. This means a young artist doesn’t only have to compete with other musicians of today, but those from the last 80 years as well.

“I have a hard time competing with John Coltrane when he’s got 60 years of marketing behind him,” Free says.

The problem, as Free sees it, is the copyright act of 1978, which extended the time before the rights to musical compositions pass into public domain from 28 to 75 years. This meant the recording companies who owned the rights to music and recordings made in the 1950s and 1960s can continue to produce and sell the music for years. Hence the belief that building the back catalogue is the key to a label’s survival.

“All of us are struggling with these issues all the time,” says Free.

Another issue confronting labels concerns digital distribution: Free is sticking to emphasizing direct sales of physical CDs because he says the economics just don’t work with downloads. He says the average online customer won’t download a full CD, reducing the revenue to the label (and artist) to a fraction of what CDs net. Consequently, he says he would need to sell to 14 online customers to realize what he can earn for one CD sale.

“The music isn’t in any danger, but the record labels making recordings may well be,” Free says. He’s marketing the company’s releases through Amazon, the label’s website and with distributors outside the United States. “We’re seeing tremendous response to our efforts.”

Summing his philosophy up, Free says: “The answer is to make more and better records.

“We’re good for jazz, we’re good for business and we make good records.”

Selected Posi-Tone releases

Doug Webb




Hooking up with bassist Stanley Clarke and keyboard player Larry Goldings for a set of sweetly swinging chestnuts has saxophonist Webb playing in fine form. Although a session veteran, this is Webb’s first release as a headliner and it gives him a chance to stand out. Webb plays with smooth tone and uses the full range of his tenor, which works well on ballads such as “I’ll Be Around” and “Fly Me to the Moon.”

Webb builds his solos skillfully and is matched by the quality of Clarke’s and Goldings’ turns. Clarke offers a deep acoustic bass sound throughout, getting some amazingly legato notes that fill the quartet’s sound.

Sarah Manning
Dandelion Clock

The demure face looking up from the cover of Dandelion Clock contrasts Manning’s often aggressive, experimental style, as she plays over a collection of original tunes and two covers, Michel Legrand‘s “The Windmills of Your Mind” and “The Peacocks” by Jimmy Rowles.

Her compositions offer enough harmonic room for Manning to craft exploring solos, often using long runs that seem to end in question marks. Never one to settle for an easy note choice when there’s a more interesting one available, her solos soar in such post-bop ballads as “Marbles” and “Habersham Street.”

Orrin Evans
Faith in Action

Evans has been growing into a major figure in jazz piano, thanks to releases as strong as his 2010 release in tribute to saxophonist Bobby Watson. Combining his own compositions and five by Watson, Evans plays smoothly through oblique runs and blues turns on solos, and lets his accompanists—which include bassist Luques Curtis and drummers Nasheet Waits, Rocky Bryant and Gene Jackson—provide a solid base for his work.

Watson’s “Appointment in Milano” features a pounding bottom underneath Evans’ swift runs, which alternate between sweet scales and modal triplets. The delightful “Beattitudes,” another Watson gem, combines an airy intro with a gentle melody. Musicians know it takes more to keep a ballad moving than a burning up-tempo number, and Evans shows his real chops on this one.

Brandon Wright
Boiling Point

Saxophonist Wright is clearly a student of the 1960s, and these eight tunes—including five original compositions—show he learned well. This is a disc fans of swinging, smoky jazz will favor. Wright never overplays and fits in pianist David Kikoski‘s playing marvelously. Case in point, the interplay on Jimmy Van Heusen’s “Here’s That Rainy Day.” With Kikoski comping sweetly, Wright gets just enough blues to keep his solo emotional without going saccharine. On the other side of the coin, the interplay between Wright, Kikoski and trumpeter Alex Sipiagin at the crescendo near the end of the samba-based “Castaway” is a real treat. All are playing hard but not over each other.

Jim Rotondi
1000 Rainbows

Rotondi’s smooth chops and smart tune selection make this a delicious outing. Playing alongside a capable four-piece band, including Joe Locke on vibes, Danny Grissett on piano, bassist Barak Mori and Bill Stewart on drums, Rotondi shines on his compositions “Bizzaro World,” “One for Felix” and “Not Like This,” a beautiful ballad duet with Locke.


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Bruce Lindsay’s AAJ review of Doug Webb “Renovations”…

April 24, 2009 was a busy day for saxophonist Doug Webb, his fellow musicians and the production team at North Hollywood’s Entourage Studios. Recordings from that day have already been released on the excellent Midnight (Posi-Tone 2010): now Renovations delivers more music from the session, and very welcome it is, too.

As with the previous recording Renovations features the core trio of Webb, bassist Stanley Clarke and drummer Gerry Gibbs on a collection of jazz standards, joined on each track by one of three guest pianist. Larry Goldings had equal credit on the sleeve of Midnight, appearing on five tunes, but on this album he shares the piano work more equally with Joe Bagg and Mahesh Balasooriya.

The tunes, as before, are familiar—overly so, perhaps—but the band is so stylish and inventive that each tune seems more like an old friend from way back than a relative who’s overstayed a welcome. The band is tight, melodic and richly-toned, treating these standards with respect, but also with an almost boyish enthusiasm. Clarke’s bass playing seems especially strong and inventive, whether driving hard on Toots Thielemans’ “Bluesette” or taking a more measured and gentle approach on Henry Mancini’s romantic “Slow Hot Wind.”

Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn’s “Satin Doll” is taken at a terrific pace, its usual seductiveness replaced with excitement and verve, both of which are epitomised by outstanding solos from Bagg and Clarke. Arthur Schwartz’ “Then I’ll Be Tired Of You” swings gently thanks to Clarke and Gibbs: Goldings’ piano and Webb’s alto saxophone share the lead line, both playing with a delicate grace. Frank Loesser’s “I’ve Never Been In Love Before” is introduced by Goldings’ Monk-like piano. Underpinned by Gibbs’ brushed shuffle beat, it features another rich bass solo from Clarke as well as lyrical and flowing solos from Webb and Goldings.

Renovations closes with “Slow Hot Wind,” Webb’s saxophone and Goldings’ piano both lending the tune a late-night feel. It’s a stylish end to the second set of tunes from that April day.

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A tremendous review by Bruce Lindsay from All About Jazz for Doug Webb “Midnight” CD….

www.allaboutjazz.comSaxophonist Doug Webb leads a superb quartet on Midnight, creating a late-night atmosphere with a hint of nostalgia on a range of classic tunes.

Webb’s career stretches back for 30 years and includes work with some of the finest jazz musicians, including Bud Shanks, Horace Silver and Freddie Hubbard, as well as leading rock and pop acts including Rod Stewart. Midnight sees Webb joined by an equally talented rhythm section; the result is a true ensemble performance with every musician given the opportunity to stretch out and put their own individual stamp on the recording.

Bassist Stanley Clarke and drummer Gerry Gibbs hold down the rhythmic center of the music with an inventive enthusiasm. Clarke, in particular, seems to relish his role in the traditional acoustic lineup, playing with verve. Their command of the rhythm is total, providing space and opportunity for the pianists to take on more of a lead role as well as delivering some exceptional solos.

The tunes may be familiar, but the quartet makes each one sound fresh, even when playing them in what might be termed the “standard” fashion. Alec Wilder’s “I’ll Be Around” finds Webb playing in a style reminiscent of fellow tenor saxophonist Scott Hamilton, the solos by Webb and pianist Larry Goldings are rich and warm. By contrast, “Try a Little Tenderness,” usually performed as a ballad by artists such as Otis Redding, is delivered in a swinging, up-tempo, style with a terrific tenor solo from Webb.

Clarke’s solos on “Crazy She Calls Me” and Charlie Parker’s “Quasimodo” are positive, precise and affecting—album highlights. He also takes the spotlight on Bart Howard’s “Fly Me to the Moon.” The arrangement is rather bland to that point, but Clarke’s performance is an object lesson in how to play a bass solo to complement the mood of a tune. Goldings’ bell-like piano chords on the closing bars of the tune are an inspired and delightful ending. “You Go To My Head” is a piano and saxophone duet, with pianist Joe Bagg playing on this tune, in a more angular and percussive contrast to Goldings elsewhere on the disc, and works exceptionally well in underpinning Webb.

The third of the album’s pianists, the young Sri Lankan Mahesh Balasooriya, joins the band for “The Boy Next Door,” and brings yet another distinctive style to the group. Closer to Bagg’s technique than Goldings, his chordal playing is economical and unselfish, and gives Gibbs the chance to create some inventive drum patterns.

Webb puts his own musical identity on this album with confidence. His tone is welcoming, whether he’s playing soprano, alto or tenor, and his solos are wonderfully melodic—every note counts, with no need to overpower the music with unnecessary displays of complex runs or techniques. Production is exceptionally good, and the trademark Posi-Tone packaging adds to the rather nostalgic feel of the music. Midnight is a triumph of thoughtful yet romantic late night jazz.

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Here’s the first review for the new Doug Webb CD “Renovations”…..

Doug Webb, a seasoned saxophonist who is equally comfortable recording soundtracks in studios or swinging on a bandstand, teamed up with heavy hitters like bass legend Stanley Clarke and pianist Larry Goldings on Midnight (Posi-Tone, 2010). That collection was an expertly crafted, all-standards affair, and the eight classic tunes that make up Renovations were culled from the same session.

While it might be easy to assume that these are second-tier, inferior performances that didn’t make the cut for Midnight, that isn’t the case. Webb starts off the program with a version of “Satin Doll” that’s anything but a rote run-through. This arrangement shakes the very harmonic foundation of the song as it modulates upward while Webb works his way through the melody. “Then I’ll Be Tired Of You” is often associated with singers rather than instrumentalists, but Webb makes a good case for adding this one into the regular saxophone repertoire. Clarke controls the momentum on “I Can’t Get Started,” while “I’ve Never Been In Love Before” proves to be an album highlight. Goldings kicks this one off with a tumbling, semi-Thelonious Monk-ish distillation of the theme. Webb exhibits a velvety tone and Goldings delivers a solo that starts with simple, yet effective, single note lines in the upper reaches of the piano.

“You’ve Changed” is classy balladry that, while delivered with style, overstays its welcome a bit. Webb’s slithery saxophone work on the sans-drums performance of “They Can’t Take That Away From Me,” and his frantic soprano saxophone flights on the back end of “Bluesette” help to re-energize the album. By the time Webb arrives at the album closer, Henry Mancini’s “Slow Hot Wind,” he has nothing left to prove, and he spins out seductive, sleek saxophone lines that leave a sense of mystery and intrigue hovering in the air.

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Doug Webb “Midnight” gets a write up from Lucid Culture….

If we told you what character saxophonist Doug Webb plays on tv, that would be distracting. His new album Midnight is probably a lesser-paying situation but it’s just as fun (more about that later). Webb is pretty ubiquitous on the West Coast and has played with everybody: Freddie Hubbard, Quincy Jones, Horace Silver and many others. The setup behind him is interesting: Larry Goldings on piano rather than organ, Stanley Clarke on upright bass instead of electric and Gerry Gibbs adding counterintuitive, understated flash behind the kit. This is a fun session, pure and simple, a bunch of pros prowling familiar terrain: most of the time they achieve a nocturnal, oldschool West Coast cool, but when the good times spill over they ride the energy for all it’s worth.

Try a Little Tenderness breathes some fresh bubbles into a piece that gets flat quickly since everybody plays it. I’ll Be Around (the pop standard, not the Howlin’ Wolf classic) has a swing wide enough to get a Mack truck through and a genuinely gorgeous, starry Goldings solo. Gibbs works Fly Me to the Moon as a subtle shuffle beneath Webb’s mentholated, opening tenor solo and Goldings’ more expansive spotlight. And it’s cool hearing Clarke, probably the last person you’d expect to get a Ray Brown impression out of, do it with a grin.

You Go to My Head gets a gently pulsing alto-and-piano duo treatment with Joe Bagg on the 88s. The Boy Next Door, with Mahesh Balasooriya on piano, has Clarke seizing more territory as he typically does, Gibbs all too glad to jump in and go along for the ride. Webb’s warm, lyrical alto work sets the stage for another glistening gem of a solo from Goldings on Crazy She Calls Me. They take Charlie Parker’s Quasimodo and set it up straight, Goldings’ unselfconscious geniality giving way to Webb to take it into the shade and then joyously out again. They close with Emily, by Johnny Mandel (who has raved about Webb’s version), a clinic in nuance on the part of the whole quartet, poignancy through a late-evening mist, an apt way to close this very smartly titled album. It’s out now on Posi-Tone. Oh yeah – Doug Webb plays Lisa Simpson’s sax parts on tv. There is a slight resemblance.

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Here’s the first review for our latest CD “Midnight” by saxophonist Doug Webb

Doug Webb – Midnight – Posi-Tone PR 8070, 52:19 ****:

(Doug Webb, saxophones; Larry Goldings, piano; Stanley Clarke, bass; Gerry Gibbs, drums; with special guests: Joe Bagg (tracks 1 & 4) and Mahesh Balasooriya, (track 5) – piano)

Both Los Angeles and New York City have many jazz musicians who remain largely a secret to the public as they remain mostly in the background, playing on studio sets for television and movies. They certainly are known to band leaders who know they can be counted on as true veterans who leave their egos at the door.

Such is the case with LA-based tenor saxophonist Doug Webb. Doug’s resume includes fifteen years with Doc Severinson’s Tonight Show band, as well as movie work for Clint Eastwood on Million Dollar Baby, and Gran Torino. He has appeared on over 500 recordings for legends like Freddie Hubbard, Quincy Jones, and Horace Silver. His soprano sax is heard on the Law and Order theme song. I’ve been fortunate enough to hear him play tasty solos for the Bill Holman Big Band. He has an old school tone that is just right for ballads and swingers alike.

Posi-Tone Records continues their winning streak by having Doug record as a leader on Midnight, just released this month. As usual for Posi-Tone, they surround their leaders with exemplary sidemen; in this case Larry Goldings, on piano, the inimitable Stanley Clarke on bass, and Gerry Gibbs (the son of legendary vibist, Terry Gibbs), on drums. Song selection is largely standards such as “Fly Me to the Moon,” “You Go to My Head,” “Crazy She Calls Me,” and the exquisite “Emily” from Johnny Mandel, where Webb’s soprano would melt the hardest heart. Clarke’s bass solo here, as well, adds to the tender affect.

Highlights abound and include Larry Goldings’ accompaniment with Webb’s silky emoting on “I’ll Be Around”; a Getzian reading of “Fly Me to the Moon”; and a soprano sax workout on “The Boy Next Door” where Stanley Clarke also shines. Bird’s “Quasimodo” is taken at a mellow pace and the rhythm section gets locked into a groove that shows the mixing engineer talents of David Horner.

If the eight tracks on Midnight are not enough to sell an astute listener, every Simpsons fanatic has to have a CD from the man who plays the saxophone of cartoon character/jazz fan, Lisa Simpson. Damn, I knew the girl had soul, it’s just that it belongs to saxophonist extraordinaire, Doug Webb….

TrackList: Try a Little Tenderness, I’ll Be Around, Fly Me to the Moon, You Go to My Head, The Boy Next Door, Crazy She Calls Me, Quasimodo, Emily