UMO feat. Sami Pitkämö
lounge, jazz, ballads
Finland’s ruling big band has jazz chops to kill, but it also has an open mind and will to investigate a lot of stylistic ground. With Lenny Pickett (see personal column) and conductor Rich
Shemaria they get funky, while with crooner Sami Pitkämö the order of the day is the Frank Sinatra songbook and jazz ballads from Sami’s new album.
UMO is a formidable horn band numbering about 18 players, who represent the cream of Finnish jazz. Founded in 1975, the band has a hell of recorded legacy that stretches from all original stuff of Sauna
palaa! and Kerkko Koskinen’s imaginary soundtrack Agatha to fresh new looks at masters from Miles and Zappa.
Sami Pitkämö is a true multi-talent, who has collaborated with UMO in their Steely Dan and Count Basie projects. Inspired the most by Brian Wilson, Stevie Wonder and Frank Sinatra, he is an
impeccable crooner, who really gets inside Ol’ Blue Eyes’ songs. He is also a composer, arranger, producer and plays several instruments, mostly trombone and guitar. Sami has played and sung in
many bands and on many records, from funk to pop to jazz. In may he finally released his first solo album Lauluja rakkaudesta ja vähän muustakin, backed by UMO.