My father, who passed away in 2002, was a well-known jazz trumpeter who played with the Maynard Ferguson, Duke Ellington and Woody Herman bands among many others. He was the Technical Adviser on "Uncle Joe Shannon," meaning he taught Burt Young to appear as though he could play the instrument.
He thoroughly enjoyed this gig because Burt is a genuinely nice individual. I remember spending time in Burt's trailer a number of times and appearing as an extra in the orphanage dormitory scene.
The producers offered dad the opportunity to perform the trumpet solos on the soundtrack but my father felt that Maynard's style (the legendary high notes and amazing technical prowess,) would be more appropriate and dramatic for the film and the character of Joe Shannon. My dad's trumpet playing style was more subtle, muted, and lyrical. Additionally, Maynard had a hit with the "Rocky" theme at the time. Chartoff-Winkler produced both the "Rocky" films and "U.J.S." Maynard said his work on this film was the best-paying job he'd ever had, (considering the short amount time he spent in the recording studio.)
"Uncle Joe Shannon" is obviously no "Citizen Kane," but the acting is good, a lot of the first-time crew members got their union cards, and ultimately I doubt the producers lost any significant money. I have fond memories of this period, and of this film.
10 of 10 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?