There was something special about this Swiss festival: it highlighted amateurs, in this case those who honor jazz in the word’s Latin sense (amator) – they played for the love of the music. The three winners of the Festival’s 1970 competition are up first. The British modern swing band Harry Burgess and Bones Galore open with a brassy, rousing rendition of Cole Porter’s Love for Sale. Centered in Geneva, the Oliver Berney-Eric Gigante Quintet flow through their original minor blues Mood and Beat, and The Step With Soul Jazz Group’s Blues For J features a hip organ-guitar-drum trio that could upstage most professional trios. The next four tracks present festival alumni. The Dixie Jazz Group plays a swinging updated version of the piece Satchmo’s Hot Five made famous, Big Butter and Egg Man. Geneva pianist Henri Chaix was hailed for his Harlem stride and the swing era band style of Ellington’s smaller groups. His quintet does justice to the evergreen Sunday. One of the most popular Swiss bands at that time, the Metronome Quintet represented Switzerland at the 1970 Expo in Osaka. Based on several folk songs, their Japan Suite beautifully blends Japanese and jazz traditions. The New Rhythm Kings is a Kuhn family affair with 13-year-old drum prodigy Dennis showcased on Crazy Drums. The pros take over on the next 5 pieces. 1970 was a breakout year for the phenomenal Hungarian bass virtuoso Aladar Pege. His band won the European band contest at that year’s Montreux Jazz Festival and made an important recording at the Radio Festival in Budapest (on MPS’s From Europe With Jazz). They play brilliantly pianist on Bela Lakatos’ up-tempo musical labyrinth, Lampe. The popular American vibraphonist Dave Pike’s Mambo Jack the Scoffer has a relaxed downhome country flair, while the distinctive Jamaican hard-bop trumpeter Dizzy Reece stars as soloist with the German-Swiss Radio Band on the aptly named Eleven Beat Blues and the funky Walk and Talk. The great Swiss pianist/composer George Grunz pushes the boundaries on his extended piece Bunauara by juxtaposing the disparate styles of saxophone giant Dexter Gordon, trumpeter Franco Ambrozetti, bass clarinetist Michel Portal, bassists Beb Guérin and Eberhard Weber, drummers Toney Oxley and Pierre Favre – a tour de force melding of musical eras and philosophies. Ditto for the two albums.