According to the liner notes of this dazzling trumpet album, in the ’50s Lou Colombo was a minor-league baseball player with a .300 batting average. Not bad, but he bats 1,000 here.
If his propulsive renditions of “It All Depends on You” and “Three Little Words” fail to wrest listeners from their seats, their next stop ought to be the doctor; something is seriously amiss with their vital signs. There is a joyfully soaring rendition of “My Romance,” which at more than seven minutes still seems too short, and the Johnny Mandel-Johnny Mercer classic “Emily” continues to haunt long after the last spray of sound. The lesser-known songs, including “(I’m Afraid) The Masquerade Is Over,” “Octopus Rag” and the title cut (for Bobby Hackett), stand comfortably alongside such standards as “Avalon,” “I Let a Song Go out of My Heart” and the throbbing “I Don’t Stand a Ghost of a Chance.”
Pianist Dave McKenna lends his always excellent support with Phil Flanigan on bass, Gray Sargent on guitar and Keith Cope-land on drums. It’s Lou you’ll remember, though, and maybe you’ll even agree with Dizzy Gillespie, who once called Colombo “the greatest trumpet player in America.” (Concord)