Vinnie Riccitelli Octet – “For The Record” Self-Released
Born in 1926 in Yonkers, NY, Vinnie Riccitelli has literally spent a lifetime playing the saxophone. He started at age 11, and by 15 was playing professionally. After serving in the Navy during WWII, he was accepted by the highly regarded Julliard School of Music as one of the first three musicians ever chosen to study the alto sax. Upon completion of his studies, he resumed his professional career. All in all, his career spans an incredible 77 years. Retiring in 2018, Riccitelli has continued to make music, only he has done so for fun from home. “For The Record” is an examination of some of his earlier releases and was recorded from November 2019 through January 2020. None of the seventeen tracks sound improvised. Rather, they come across as skillfully arranged and expertly executed. Riccitelli did not actually re-record these tracks for this release, however, he was on hand to oversee their recording. Despite being a re-release of prior recordings, it is a firm example of the skill Riccitelli possessed when he was playing professionally. All in all, this is a great example of traditional jazz by a 95-year-old musician with 77 years of experience in figuring out how to make exceptional music.