Collette was a pioneering jazz flautist and saxophonist, and one of the earliest be-boppers on the West Coast. A member of the mid-50s Chico Hamilton group he was key to what was known as the Cool School of west coast jazz. He was a more straight ahead player than that might imply. He spent a great deal of time in film and television orchestras so he was largely under-recorded as a leader; consequently his Dootone album has become a collectors’ item.
Unlike the other Dootone jazz LPs, Collette’s album has a highly arranged sound typical of west coast jazz. Al Viola’s guitar is an especially prominent foil to the array of reed instruments played by Collette and Earl Palmer’s drumming offers a fine counterpoint. The original tapes have given us an alternate take of ‘Soft Touch’ only available on a rare Bel Canto LP pairing Collette tracks with some Curtis Counce.