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Gwilym Simcock piano
Geoffrey Simon conductor

The World's First French Horn Big Band

Cala Records announces the release of Give It One with The London Horn Sound Big Band - the first-ever big band of French horns.   Featuring nineteen of London's finest horn players and pianist Gwilym Simcock, Britain's “Jazz Musician of the Year”, Give It One covers the jazz spectrum with a dazzling array of standards and new compositions

Conductor of Give It One and Artistic Director of Cala Records, Geoffrey Simon, comments: “This CD shows not only that fine French horn players have the versatility and talent to excel in the big band idiom, but that they produce an amazing collective sound, like no big band ever heard before.   The music goes from red-hot to velvety cool.”

New light is shed on favourites, including Not Like This, Daydream, Give It One and God Bless The Child, in the hands of inventive arrangers Richard Bissill, Tim Jackson, Jim Rattigan and Gwilym Simcock.   These British musicians equally revel in their own creations, such as Bissill's quirky Fat Belly Blues, Rattigan's lilting Caseoso, Jackson's witty Three Point Turn and Simcock's take-noprisoners Blues for Hughie.

The hornists are drawn from such orchestras as the London Philharmonic, London Symphony, Philharmonia, Royal Philharmonic and BBC Symphony, and include, amongst others, horn-world legends Richard Bissill, Nigel Black, Laurence Davies, Pip Eastop, Anthony Halstead, Dave Lee, Frank Lloyd, Martin Owen and Hugh Seenan.

Gwilym Simcock's multiple contributions to Give It One as pianist, composer, arranger and, for a brief moment, solo jazz horn player, add further layers of character and virtuosity to the recording.   Says Hugh Seenan, the project's creator and former principal horn of the London Symphony: “Gwilym's awesome playing, scintillating one moment and exquisite the next, inspired us horn players to the greatest heights and led us seamlessly into the realm of jazz.”

London's Evening Standard says of Simcock: “A meteoric rise to stardom … Hailed for his originality and a gifted pianist, he is wanted everywhere and is one to watch.”   Simcock and the French horns are supported by the experienced Sam Burgess bass and Martin France drums.

Cala Records Vice-President Jeremy Swerling notes: “In addition to the twelve tracks on this 73 minute CD, we are pleased to offer four further tracks exclusively as digital downloads from Tim Jackson's rollicking Sound Of Music Jazz Suite.”

Give it One follows Cala Records' first massed-horn CD, The London Horn Sound (CACD0112), which has sold over 22,000 copies and continues to be a top seller.   The independent British label is known for its world premiere orchestral recordings and its unique, 10-CD London Sound Series of virtuoso single-instrument orchestras.   Simon comments: “The London Horn Sound has become iconic amongst horn players and Give it One will extend this tradition.   But it has been created to appeal also, on its merits, to jazz enthusiasts.”


  1. Los Jaraneros - Richard Bissill     7:23
  2. Not Like This - Jeremy Lubbock (arr. Richard Bissill)     7:00
  3. Give It One - Ferguson and Downey (arr. Richard Bissill)     3:40
  4. Fat Belly Blues - Richard Bissill     5:40
  5. The Trolley Song - Martin and Blaine (arr. Richard Bissill)     4:26
  6. Daydream - Ellington and Strayhorn (arr. Jim Rattigan)     4:09
  7. Caseoso - Jim Rattigan     4:34
  8. Three Point Turn - Timothy Jackson     4:05
  9. Lana's Lullaby - Timothy Jackson     5:28
10. The Way We Were - Marvin Hamlisch (arr. Gwilym Simcock)     9:30
11. God Bless The Child - Holliday and Herzog (arr. Gwilym Simcock)     9:33
12. Blues For Hughie - Gwilym Simcock     7:45

      TOTAL TIME     73:20

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