I Dig

Bachelor pad noir lounge exotica
Les Baxter
Joey Altruda
Ira Newborn
Moises Vivanco
Rudy Toombs
Quincy Jones
Robert Drasnin
Henry Mancini
Elmer Bernstein
Leonard Bernstein
Screamin' Jay Hawkins
Intergalactic Contemporary Ensemble
Duane Schulthess
Janet Gottschall Fried
Catalog Number: 
new music

Minneapolis, MN

Release Date: 
Oct 25, 2001
Liner Notes: 
1 CD
One Sheet: 

Intergalactic Contemporary Ensemble (formerly Minnesota Contemporary Ensemble) I Dig recalls an evening (4/29/00) when a new music ensemble played lounge music at a Minneapolis nightclub. The group was Minnesota Contemporary Ensemble, here for the first time reborn as the Intergalactic Contemporary Ensemble (Minnesota has been subdued and made safe for new music; the further conquest of America will not satisfy our ambitions, and event he world is not enough.)

Crime jazz, exotica, bachelor pad music played by a band known for its performances of Maxwell Davies, Varese, Nancarrow and Zappa. The show capped an ICE tour through the Midwest, when Schulthess unleashed the full fury of his band, everybody looked at one another in wild surmise. The looks said: "These cats are bad." If you weren't one of the 750 people to have seen ICE at the Fine Line Cafe, now is your chance to hear it for yourself - you won't believe a live band can sound this good!

I Dig features a mammoth take-no-prisoners performance of Leonard Bernstein's classic Prelude Fugue and Riffs featuring lounge singer Vic Volare on clarinet. Also included is the first live performance of Henry Mancini's score to Orson Welles' film noir masterpiece Touch of Evil. I Dig showcases Janet Gottschall Fried from the Minnesota Opera on two Yma Sumac numbers, Taki Rari & Malambo #1, as well as a driving performance of Elmer Bernstein's Main Title from Man with the Golden Arm featuring Doug Little on tenor sax that will have you running for the repeat button. Throw in the world premiere of Three Views of Havana by the legendary Robert Drasnin (CBS Televison's Director of Music for over a decade) plus works by Quincy Jones, Les Baxter, Screamin' Jay Hawkins, and Joey Altruda, and you have I Dig, a MUST for your collection!



"a killer live show that brings to light musical treasures that might otherwise have been lost forever to the piles of used vinyl at thrift stores. ICE puts them on this piece of plastic with a delicate and emphatic vengeance." - Paul Dickenson


"A thrilling performance both vocally and dramatically"


If the thought of "Lounge Music" played by a consummate classical musical ensemble (the Minnesota Contemporary Ensemble, "reborn" here as the Intergalactic Contemporary Ensemble) intrigues you, you might thoroughly enjoy the delightfully playful renderings of these mostly classic tunes. From Quincy Jones' "Soul Bossa Nova" to Rudolph Toombs' "One Mint Julep" by way of Leonard Bernstein's brassy "Prelude, Fugue and Riffs" and Jay Hawkins' "I Put a Spell on You," it is all there, in full style. Surprisingly, these guys and gals (twenty-one in all) swing as though they had been doing this all their lives. The solos are adequate, too, enough so to straddle the line between pop and jazz. It is all great fun, with rocking rhythms, heavy winds, corny harmonies, and danceable tunes. Finger snappin' good fun, played immaculately by some well-trained performers whose names are not likely to be recognized by many jazz fans. No matter. The band achieves its goal of giving this kind of music a more serious treatment, and the results speak for themselves. - Steven Loewy


"... a titanic take on "Prelude, Fugue, and Riffs that would causes its composer Leonard Bernstein to shimmy in his grave… tight, energized, and magical performances." - Matt Peiken