All About Jazz

Ralph Hepola – Tuba

1. Roots and Wings 07:11
2. Clarion Call 05:41
3. Hepmobile 02:10
4. Blue Moment 02:15
5. Phraseology 05:56
6. Ralph's Riff 05:20
7. Through the Wringer 05:22
8. Incoming Blues 06:09
9. Black-Eyed Susan 03:05
10. Scottish Lullaby 03:08
11. Mary, Young and Fair 03:37
12. American Landscape 05:06
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About album

Ralph Hepola, tuba

Peter Shu, piano and all keyboards except as noted

Daniel Arlig, acoustic and electric basses

David Stanoch, drums and percussion

Mark Asche, keyboard on Hepmobile and piano on Blue Moment

Peter Lothringer, guitar on Ralph’s Riff and Through the Wringer

Gary Ness, photos

Rita Fonder, graphic design

Aaron Lange, web design


Blue Moment, Clarion Call, Hepmobile, Incoming Blues and Phraseology composed and arranged by Ralph Hepola.

American Landscape and Roots and Wings composed and arranged by Ralph Hepola and Peter Shu.

Three Traditional Celtic Airs: Black-Eyed Susan, Mary, Young and Fair and Scottish Lullaby arranged by Ralph Hepola and Peter Shu.

Ralph’s Riff and Through the Wringer composed and arranged by Peter Lothringer.


A few thoughts about the music:

Clarion Call utilizes the chord progression of trumpeter Kenny Dorham’s Blue Bossa. A clarion was a type of trumpet during the Middle Ages. Incidentally, the Latin word for trumpet is tuba.

The title Hepmobile was derived from the Hupmobile, an automobile manufactured from 1909 through 1939 by the Hupp Motor Car Company of Detroit. The piece is a “solo vehicle” for tuba.

Phraseology is a bebop tune with multiple choruses played on the tuba.

Celtic Airs such as Danny Boy and The Blue Bells of Scotland have long been favorites of brass players. This recording presents three that are rarely heard: Black-Eyed Susan; Scottish Lullaby and Mary, Young and Fair.

The last track was inspired by the American Landscape School of Painters who flourished circa 1820 to1880. Adventuresome and entrepreneurial, they painted scenes of incredible natural beauty on very large canvases.

I will sing and make music to the Lord. – Psalm 27:6

a HepTones production; funded by an Individual Artist Grant awarded to Ralph Hepola by the Southwest Minnesota Arts Council; copyright 2019

Genre: contemporary jazz
Publisher: Spectrum Recordings
Label: Spectrum Recordings 180820

"Ralph Hepola’s "Tuba" carves out a place for the much-maligned horn in modern jazz. The virtuoso tuba player leads his quartet through a set of his freewheeling originals, playing with remarkable fluency as the lead instrument."

- Jazz Promo Services - Based in New York and part of the Big Apple Jazz Scene for more than twenty five years.

"Ralph Hepola makes a strong case for the tuba as a lead instrument in jazz."

- Scott Yanow is a jazz journalist, jazz historian, and the author of thirteen books: Trumpet Kings; All Music Guide to Jazz; The Jazz Singers; The Great Jazz Guitarists: The Ultimate Guide; Afro-Cuban Jazz; Jazz On Film; Jazz On Record – The First Sixty Years; Jazz: A Regional Exploration; Bebop; Swing; Classic Jazz; Duke Ellington; Jazz Lives - Till We Shall Meet And Never Part. Mr. Yanow is a regular contributor to eight magazines: Downbeat, Jazziz, New York City Jazz Record, Los Angeles Jazz Scene, Jazz Artistry Now, Jazz Monthly, The Syncopated Times and The Jazz Rag (from England). He has written over 850 liner notes, and approximately 20,000 record reviews.

"Hey Jazz Fans – Ready for Some Hipster Heptones? Veteran tuba master Ralph Hepola creates a dynamic, supremely soulful new lead voice for the idiom on his eclectic debut album “Tuba”."

- As a veteran music journalist, Jonathan Widran has been a regular contributor, reviewer, feature writer, columnist and/or editor for Music Connection, Wine and Jazz Magazine, Jazziz Magazine, All Music Guide, Singer/Songwriter Universe,,, iTunes, and the Los Angeles Times.

"Tu like a tuba, fufu like a funker and gro like a groover. This tune has Herbie fusion magic all over it." - 4 stars.

- Fiona Ord-Shrimpton, Editor/Curator of Track of the Day on All About Jazz, the world’s biggest jazz website, writing about Roots and Wings from the new recording Ralph Hepola – Tuba.
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