The Four Others
Harry Allen, Eric Schneider, Greg Fishman & Ted Hogarth

Recreate the sound of the Four Brothers
with Larry Gray, George Fludas & Andy Brown

Jazz Showcase, Chicago, IL
April 2, 2011

Four Brothers

Story & Photos by Brad Walseth, Copyright 2011

Billing themselves the "Four Others," tenor saxophonists Harry Allen, Eric Schneider, and Greg Fishman, and baritone saxophonist Ted Hogarth, recreated the glory days of Woody Herman's popular Second Herd - a band that featured the legendary Four Brothers saxophone section consisting of Stan Getz, Zoot Sims, Herbie Steward and Serge Chaloff. Backed by guitarist Andy Brown, bassist Larry Gray and drummer George Fludas, the NYC-based Allen and his Chicago counterparts entertained a packed house with a mostly high-spirited late set Saturday night at Chicago's storied Jazz Showcase.

Starting off with Gerry Mulligan's "Five Brothers," it was clear that the band and soloists had grown comfortable with each other during their engagement at the Showcase, and the familiarity had produced a wonderful interplay between the saxophonists that transported the listener back to the golden era of jazz. The fun continued on the Johnny Mercer/Harrey Warren-penned "Jeepers Creepers" - made famous by Louis Armstrong. Interestingly enough, the chord progression from that song is also the basis for the Jimmy Giuffre song "Four Brothers," which gave birth to the name of original foursome in Woody Herman's band.

One of the highlights of the set was "The Trolley Song" - a showpiece for Judy Garland from the film "Meet Me in St. Louis," that featured enough hard swinging saxophones and energetic band support to nearly knock the photos of jazz glitterati off the walls of the venue. And while the saxophonists traded off on taking solo spotlights, especially on a few well-chosen ballads, it was the incendiary interaction of the entire combo on "What a Little Moonlight Can Do" that ended the evening, which was most memorable.

Harry Allen

Larry Gray

Greg Fishman

Eric Schneider

George Fludas

Ted Hogarth

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