Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band

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The Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band was one of the most noteworthy jazz big bands formed outside the United States.[1]

It was created in 1961, when, helped by producer Gigi Campi, the US drummer Kenny Clarke, the Belgian pianist and composer Francy Boland and the ex-Ellington bassist Jimmy Woode brought together several jazz musicians of note. Although based in Europe, the band was truly multinational, with several US musicians in the line-up.

It was disbanded in 1972, having recorded more than 15 albums. Many of them were released on the German jazz record label MPS Records.


In the course of its existence, band members included Johnny Griffin, Muvaffak "Maffy" Falay, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Ronnie Scott, Carl Drewo, Tony Coe, Derek Humble, Nat Peck, Ake Persson, Dusko Goykovich, Stan Sulzmann, Ack van Rooyen, John Surman, Jimmy Deuchar, Manfred Schoof, Albert Mangelsdorff, Erik van Lier, Ron Mathewson, Fats Sadi, Kenny Clare, Benny Bailey, Jimmy Woode, Art Farmer, Sahib Shihab, Shake Keane, Idrees Sulieman and Herb Geller, and it collaborated on occasions with Phil Woods, Zoot Sims, Stan Getz, John Bodwin, Derek Watkins and many others.



  • Francy Boland – The Orchestra 1: Blue Flame (1976) MPS
  • Francy Boland – The Orchestra 2: Red Hot (1976) MPS
  • Francy Boland – The Orchestra 3: White Heat (1976) MPS

Video performances[edit]

  • Live in Prague 1967 (DVD - 2008) Impro Jazz

Compilations and combination re-issues[edit]

  • (Ebulient Roaring Screaming Big Band Sound of) Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland, Special Guest Artist Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis (1972) MPS – selected tracks from More Smiles and Sax No End
  • The Best of the Clarke-Boland Big Band (1974) MPS – selected tracks from All Smiles, More Smiles and Sax No End
  • Smiles (1976) MPS – Encore Vol. 7: The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band – All Smiles (complete) + More Smiles (complete)
  • Live at Ronnie Scott's (1976) MPS – Encore Vol. 9: The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band - Volcano (complete) + Rue Chaptal (complete)
  • Historically Speaking (1993) Emanon – selected tracks from 6 previously released albums plus some unissued tracks
  • Blowing the Cobwebs Out (1994) Emanon – Volcano (complete) + Rue Chaptal (complete) + At Her Majesty's Pleasure (complete) + Off Limits (almost complete)
  • Two Originals (1994) MPS – All Blues (complete) + Sax No End (Complete)
  • Three Latin Adventures (1995) MPS – Latin Kaleidoscope (complete) + Fellini 712 (complete)
  • Our Kinda Strauss (1998) Rearwind – Swing, Waltz, Swing (almost complete) plus several bonus tracks
  • Blue Flame / Red Hot / White Heat (2008) MPS – Francy Boland - The Orchestra: Blue Flame (complete) + ...Red Hot (complete) + ...White Heat (complete)
  • Now Hear Our Meanin' – The Complete 1963 Recordings (2009) Jazz lips – Now Hear Our Meanin' (complete) + Handle with Care (complete) + 4 tracks from Swing, Waltz, Swing


  1. ^ Berendt, Joachim (1976). The Jazz Book. Paladin. pp. 366–367.
  2. ^ Encyclopedia del Jazz: Kenny Clarke accessed September 20, 2016
  3. ^ Although Open Door contains one track less than Jazz Convention Vol. I

External links[edit]