The Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra (KJRO) – the Hepcats favorite band!

The Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra (KJRO), co-directed by UK School of Music professors Miles KJROCD1[1]Osland and Dick Domek, SOM3consists of the finest and most  talented faculty, alumni and musicians from Kentucky area colleges and universities.  KJRO is a 17 piece big band that is especially suited for and highly skilled at recreating authentic swing-era arrangements.  They are the only big band in the Lexington area, and one of the few bands in this region that can capture the energy, excitement and rhythmic feeling and pulse of the big band music of the swing-era.  Close your eyes and you may think you’re back in the late 1930’s or early 40’s, dancing to Duke Ellington in the Cotton Club, Jimmie Lunceford in the Savoy, Benny Goodman in the Roseland or Count Basie in the Woodside.
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The Hepcats and the UK School of Music have been collaborating since 2005 on Big Band Swing Dances.  At these events either KJRO or the UK Jazz Ensemble (UKJE) play songs that are considered swing-era classics.  Many of these songs are not played very often (if at all) at live music venues in their original arrangement by your average “big band” or “swing band” due to their technical difficulty.

A Tribute to the Great Big Bands of the Swing-Era book KJRO for this special program!

Click here for all the info!

Songs you’ll hear at a Hepcats / KJRO Big Band Swing Dance

Here are some of the songs you’ll hear at the next Hepcats/KJRO Big Band Swing Dance (*=on the Ellington Celebration CD; **=on the Flying Home CD):

o **Flying Home, by Lionel Hampton.

o **For Dancers Only; **Lunceford Special; Four or Five Times; My Blue Heaven; Baby Won’t You Please Come Home; by Jimmie Lunceford.

o Rockin’ in Rhythm (*1930 and **1963 versions); **Jive Stomp”; *Stevedore Stomp; Take the A Train; **In a Mellotone; *Ring Dem Bells; *Drop Me Off in Harlem; Cottontail; by Duke Ellington.

o **Back Bay Shuffle; by Artie Shaw.

o **Swingtime in the Rockies (the 1938 Carnegie Hall version, 264 BPM!); **Sing, Sing, Sing; Bugle Call Rag; King Porter Stomp; **Don’t Be That Way; by Benny Goodman.

o Wrappin’ It Up; Christopher Columbus; by Fletcher Henderson.

o **Skee; **Hairy Joe Jump; **Too Much; by Harlan Leonard.

o **Doggin” Around; **Jumpin’ at the Woodside; **It’s Sand, Man; Splanky; by Count Basie.

o **Chatt. Choo Choo; String of Pearls; Little Brown Jug; Penn. 6-5000; by Glenn Miller.

Next Hepcats / KJRO Event

Click here for info on the next Hepcats/UK School of Music collaboration!

KJRO’s CD recordings

In 1999, KJRO released their first CD “Ellington Celebration”, a retrospective of Ellington’s music from the 1920’s to the 1970’s (1999 was also the centennial year of Ellington’s birth).  With the release of “Ellington Celebration”, KJRO established itself as one of the best jazz repertory orchestras currently performing.
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In 2009, partly as a result of their experiences at Hepcats/KJRO big band swing dance collaborations, KJRO released their second CD, “Flying Home”.  The CD contains 24 tracks, many of them favorites for swing dancers at these events.  Click here to read a review of the Flying Home CD, by Mike Richardson.

CD Tracks of Flying Home

Flying Home
by the KentuckyJazz Repertory Orchestra
24 Tracks on the CD
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Tk# – Title – Org. Artist – Time – c. BPM
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1. Flying Home (1942), Lionel Hampton, 3:15, 192 bpm
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2. Jumpin’ at the Woodside (1938), Count Basie, 3:13, 239 bpm
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3. In a Mellowtone (1940), Duke Ellington, 3:15, 133 bpm
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4. *On the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe (1955), Harry James, 2:39, 129 bpm
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5. Doggin’ Around (1938), Count Basie, 3:09, 246 bpm
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6. In My Solitude (1934) – Duke Ellington – 3:18 – 080 bpm
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7. It’s Sand, Man (1942), Count Basie, 3:13, 195 bpm
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8. Ill Wind (1941), Benny Carter, 3:55, 068 bpm
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9. Jive Stomp (1933), Duke Ellington, 2:53, 212 bpm
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10. Sing, Sing, Sing (1937), Benny Goodman, 3:32, 233 bpm
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11. Skee (1940), Harlan Leonard, 3:01, 204 bpm
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12. Perdido (1942), Duke Ellington, 3:10, 130 bpm
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13. Sepia Panorama (1942), Duke Ellington, 3:24, 110 bpm
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14. Hairy Joe Jump (1940), Harlan Leonard, 3:16, 173 bpm
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15. For Dancers Only (1937), Jimmie Lunceford, 2:47, 151 bpm
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16. Too Much (1940), Harlan Leonard, 3:22, 182 bpm
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17. Lunceford Special (1939), Jimmie Lunceford, 2:56, 242 bpm
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18. *I Thought About You (1956), Nelson Riddle, 3:46, 116 bpm
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19. Back Bay Shuffle (1938), Artie Shaw, 3:25, 193 bpm
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20. Swingtime in the Rockies (1938), Benny Goodman, 2:34, 264 bpm
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21. Don’t Be That Way (1938), Benny Goodman, 3:21, 168 bpm
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22. Jack the Bear (1940), Duke Ellington, 3:22, 154
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23. Chattanooga Choo Choo (1941), Glenn Miller, 2:36, 144 bpm
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23. Rockin’ in Rhythm (1963), Duke Ellington, 3:45, 216 bpm
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*Vocal: Angie Ortega

Where to buy KJRO CD’s

Where to buy Flying Home CD:

o See Mike or Mary Richardson at any Hepcats event.   The cost is $15, saving you the shipping costs.  You may pay by cash or check. Make checks payable to the Kentucky Jazz Repertory Orchestra; all monies from the sale of the CD go to the band.

o Order the CD from Amazon.com (price varies); click here.

Where to buy the Ellington Celebration CD

o Order the CD from from Amazon.com (price varies); click here.