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Bulletin - November/ December 2009
Jazz, Dance Bands & Vocalists
Noel Coward  -> Ted Weems




NOEL COWARD JSP JSPCD 1905 The Revue & War Years, 1928-1952 ● CD $19.98
Four CD set with 73 songs from this multi talented artist - playwright, songwriter, actor, singer, film and theater director and debonair cabaret artist. It includes the original versions of some of his most famous songs like Mad Dogs And Englishmen/ London Pride/ I'll See You Again/ Room With A View/ The Stately Homes Of England/ I Like America and others. There are excerpts from plays, witty topical songs from World War 2 (Could You Please Oblige Us With A Bren Gun/ Don't let's Be Beastly To The Germans, etc.) and lots more.

JOHNNY DODDS Retrieval 79056 Definitive Dodds, 1926-1927 ● CD $10.98
22 tracks, 67 mins, essential
The complete recordings made between May 1926 and October 1927 by groups featuring one of the greatest and most influential jazz clarinetists of all time. Dodds was responsible for bringing his native New Orleans clarinet sound to Chicago, appearing as a co-leader under numerous guises, as well as contributing to prized recordings by groups with other leaders. The first 11 tracks here features Lil's Hot Shots, New Orleans Wanderers and The New Orleans Bootblack - groups led by Lil Armstrong to capitalize on the success of on the Louis Armstrong Hot Five sides for Okeh. The three Hot Shots sides feature Louis while the others are essentially a Satch-less Hot 5 with Kid Ory (tb), Johnny St. Cyr (bj) with George Mitchell (cnt) & Joe Clark (as). The remaining 11 tracks feature two sessions from 1927 by two different incarnations of Johnny Dodds' Black Bottom Stompers - one with Louis Armstrong, Roy Palmer, Barney Bigard and Earl Hines while the other has George Mitchell, Natty Dominique, John Thomas and Charlie Alexander. Wonderful bluesy early jazz in superb sound, including all alternate takes and including a booklet with an in depth discussion of these sides by Mark Berresford. (FS)

JAMES P. JOHNSON Collectables 6959 Parlor Piano Solos From Rare Piano Rolls ● CD $12.98
13 tracks, 40 mins, recommended
Here's a solid collection of compositions from "Stride" piano pioneer James P. Johnson, full of lively old-time Ragtime and Jazz. Johnson's piano rolls themselves were highly influential, as artists like Lil Armstrong and Duke Ellington credited them as learning tools as they were coming up, playing the rolls and holding their fingers above the pianos keyboard to see how they would move. A lot of care has gone into the recordings here, so we can hear Caprice Rag/ Fascination/ Carolina Shout, and other vintage tunes as if they were being played in our very own parlors. Now I just have to get a parlor. (JM)

THE TENNESSEE TOOTERS Hep 1081 The Complete 1924-1926 Sessions ● CD $15.98
Fine set of hot white jazz featuring a group assembled in the studio by the Vocalion record company featuring primarily New York based musicians. Over the course of the first 20 tracks the personnel varies somewhat from session to session starting with Red Nichols on trumpet, Vincent Grande on trombone, Benny Krueger on alto sax, Harry Reser on banjo and others. Over the course of the first nine sessions other musicians appear including Harry Gluck and Earl Oliver in the trumpet seat and Miff Mole and Sammy Lewis doing the trombone chores. The tenth session from May 1926 is a completely different group recorded in Chicago and the final session issued under the name The Tennessee Tooters features another different group recorded in New York in September of '26. Tracks include Prince Of Wails/ How Come You Do me Like You Do?/ Those Panama Mammas/ Kansas City Stomps/ Charleston/ Sweet Man/ Hot Aire/ Hobo's Prayer, etc. Remastering by Hans Eekhoff is superb and there are extensive notes by Norman Field and full discographical info.

SOPHIE TUCKER Archeophone 5010 Origins Of The Red Hot Mama, 1910-1922 ● CD $21.98
24 tracks, very highly recommended
Fabulous collection featuring the earliest recordings of one of the great musical entertainers of the 20th century and, as this collection makes clear, an important influence on popular and jazz singing. Sophie was a rambunctious performer who became known for a selection of risqué recordings and even more risqué live performances but even though she had to tame down her performances for record there was a sensuous lustiness to her performances right from the very beginning that was absent from the performances of her contemporaries. Sophie was a great self promoter though the stories she told of her life varied as the situation demanded and so creating a biography was quite a challenge though fortunately the compilers of this collection had access to the 500 scrapbooks that Sophie kept thoughout her performing life as well as the unedited handwritten manuscript of her autobiography that was only recently unearthed. Even so, elements of her early life are uncertain but the authors make a valiant effort to trace Sophie's early history which are told in the gorgeous 72 page booklet crammed with rare photos, sheet music, advertisements and much more - many from Sophie's scrapbooks. Her first recording, the syncopated, That Lovin' Rag showed the direction that her music would take. and these early recordings taken from Edison cylinders and rare 78s feature all the elements that would appear in her later recordings - the half spoken asides, the bawdy chuckles and the infectious enthusiasm that she brings to the music. Included here is the first recordings from 1911 of the song that would be forever associated with her - Some Of These Days. Other songs include My Husband's In The City/ Reuben Rag/ Missouri Joe/ I'm Glad My Daddy's In A Uniform (including an early example of some double entendre)/ Don't Put A Tax On the Beautiful Girls/ Learning/ It's All Over Now/ Pick Me Up And Lay Me Down In Dear Old Dixieland, etc. The sound quality on these almost 100 year old recordings is astonishing. The authors of the booklet Susan & Lloyd Ecker have gathered so much information about Sophie that they have plans for a two hour video documentary, a theatrical musical film and a dramatic television series! For more info check out www.sophietucker.com where you can also get all kind of Sophie Tucker merchandise! Congratulation to Archeophone for another wonderful and immensley important release. (FS)

VARIOUS ARTISTS JSP JSPCD 962 Gennett Jazz ● CD $28.98
Four CDs with 105 tracks of jazz and some blues recorded for the Starr Piano Company's small but important Gennett label between 1922 and 1930.Artists include The Friars Society Orchestrea (actually The New Orleans Rhythm Kings), Ladd's Black Aces, The Wolverine Orchestra (with Bix Beiderbecke), The Windy City Jazzers, The Happy Harmonists, King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band (with Louis Armstrong & Johnny Dodds), Jelly Roll Morton (five piano solos), Fess Williams & His Royal Flush Orchestra, Vicksburg Blowers, Hattie Snow (acc by Syd Valentine & His Patent Leather Kids), Elvira Johnson (acc by The Birmingham Downtown Strutters), Lizzie Washington, State Street Ramblers, Irene Scruggs Zach White's Chocolate Beau Brummels and others. Tracks are remastered from the Joe Bussard collection.
BAILEY'S LUCKY SEVEN: I Wonder Blues (I've Got the Wonder Blues)/ Pick Me Up and Lay Me Down in Dear Old Dixieland/ Who Loved You Best/ JOSEPHINE BEATTY: Early Every Morn/ Nobody Knows the Way I Feel 'Dis Mornin'/ THE BUCKTOWN FIVE: Hot Mittens/ FRANK BUNCH & HIS FUZZY WUZZIES: Fourth Avenue Stomp/ EZRA BUZZINGTON'S RUSTIC REVELLERS: Bass Blues/ Brown Jug Blues/ THE CALIFORNIA VAGABONDS: Slue Foot/ FRIARS SOCIETY ORCHESTRA: Bugle Call Blues/ Discontented Blues/ Eccentric/ Farewell Blues/ Panama/ Tiger Rag/ HATTIE GARLAND: Strange Woman's Dream/ You Used to Be Sugar Blues/ THE HAPPY HARMONISTS: Steady Steppin' Papa/ JELLY JAMES & HIS FEWSICIANS: Make Me Know It/ EDNA JOHNSON: I'm Drifting from You Blues/ Woman Gets Tired of One Man All the Time/ ELVIRA JOHNSON: How Could I Be Blue?/ Numbers on the Brain/ ALBERTA JONES: Red Beans and Rice/ Wild Geese Blues/ RICHARD M. JONES: Jazzin' Babies Blues/ Twelfth Street Rag/ THE KENTUCKY BLOWERS: Charley My Boy/ LADD'S BLACK ACES: Nobody's Sweetheart/ Runnin' Wild/ Stop Your Kidding/ Unfortunate Blues/ You've Got to See Your Mama Every Night/ LANIN'S FAMOUS PLAYERS: Swingin' Down the Lane/ VIOLA MCCOY: If You Want to Keep Your Daddy Home/ Laughin' Cryin' Blues/ Midnight Blues (A Wee Hour Chant)/ Triflin' Blues (Daddy Don't You Trifle on Me)/ FRANK MELROSE: Jelly Roll Stomp/ Pass the Jug/ JOSIE MILES: 31st Street Blues/ Pipe Dream Blues/ War Horse Mama/ You Don't Know My Mind Blues/ JELLY ROLL MORTON: Grandpa's Spells (A Stomp)/ Kansas City Stomp/ King Porter (A Stomp)/ New Orleans (Blues) Joys/ Pearls (A Stomp)/ Wolverine Blues (Joys)/ HUSK O'HARE'S SUPER ORCHESTRA OF CHICAGO: Boo Hoo Hoo/ Tiger Rag/ KING OLIVER'S CREOLE JAZZ BAND: Canal Street Blues/ Chimes Blues/ Dipper Mouth Blues (Sugar Foot Stomp)/ Froggie Moore/ I'm Going Away to Wear You off My Mind/ Just Gone/ Mandy Lee Blues/ Snake Rag/ Weather Bird Rag/ PORTER'S BLUE DEVILS: "E" Flat Blues (sic)/ Original Charleston Strut/ THE RED ONION JAZZ BABIES: Santa Claus Blues/ Terrible Blues/ BERTHA ROSS: Blues Rode Me All Night Long/ Lost Man Blues/ IRENE SCRUGGS: My Back to the Wall/ You've Got What I Want/ HATTIE SNOW: Daddy What You Going to Do/ Make That Gravel Fly/ THE STATE STREET RAMBLERS: Endurance Stomp/ My Baby/ Oriental Man/ Pleasure Mad/ Some Do and Some Don't/ Someday You'll Know/ Tack It Down/ Yearning and Blue/ GEORGE H. TREMER: Some of These Days/ Spirit of '49 Rag/ THE TRIANGLE HARMONY BOYS: Chicken Supper Strut/ THE VICKSBURG BLOWERS: Monte Carlo Joys/ Twin Blues/ LIZZIE WASHINGTON: East Coast Blues/ Fall or Summer Blues/ Sport Model Mamma Blues/ Working Man Blues/ WATSON'S PULLMAN PORTERS: Barbecue Blues (F Sharp Blues)/ ZACH WHITE'S CHOCOLATE BEAU BRUMMELS: Hum All Your Troubles Away/ It's Tight Like That/ Mandy/ SIDNEY WILLIAMS: Mississippi Shivers/ FESS WILLIAMS & HIS ROYAL FLUSH ORCHESTRA: It's Breaking My Heart to Keep Away from You/ Ya Gotta Know How to Love/ THE WINDY CITY JAZZERS: Bringing Home the Bacon/ THE WOLVERINE ORCHESTRA: Big Boy/ Copenhagen/ Jazz Me Blues/ Lazy Daddy/ Oh Baby/ Riverboat Shuffle/ Sensation/ Susie

VARIOUS ARTISTS Retrieval 79058 The Jazz Modernists, 1924-1933 ● CD $10.98
A 24 track collection compiled to show a different approach to the story of the development of jazz from the familiar one and showing that the artists featured here, centering around cornetist and piano player Bix Beiderbecke incorporated classical and other elements in their music that are not often recognized. Digby Fairweather's detailed notes explain this idea but whether or not you follow his reasoning you will certainly enjoy these fine sides by The Wolverine Orchestra (with Bix), The Original Memphis Five, Ross Gorman & His Orch., Red Nichols & His Five Pennies, Tram, Bix & Eddie, The Charleston Chasers (with Red Nichols and Miff Mole), Frankie Trumbauer & His Orch., Don Voorhees & His Orch. and others. Sound quality is superb.

VARIOUS ARTISTS Wagram 3138862 Gypsy Swing ● CD $37.98
4 CDs, 60 tracks, 210 mins, highly recommended
This is a fantastic set and for someone like me who doesn't actually have much of this kind of music, because it is kind of an instant collection. With great song selections across a wide array of performers, this provides an overview of "Gypsy Jazz" that I was really impressed by. The huge names that you expect are here -- Django, Grappelli, Latcho Drum -- but only in small amounts, leaving the bulk of the collection to less famous artists, most all with only one track each. So you get to enjoy acts like The Rosenberg Trio, Samson Schmidt Quintet, Lemmy Constintine, Jacques Higelin, Trio Givone, Norig, and so many more. Much of the music is from recent recordings and showcases an art form that definitely seems to be flourishing. The musicianship is consistently outstanding, with dynamic guitar work and haunting violin playing, and featuring recordings that are dramatic, passionate and exiting throughout. Little in the way of liner notes, but that certainly doesn't diminish its appeal much. (JM)

TED WEEMS Retrieval 79034 The Essential Ted Weems, 1923-1930 ● CD $19.98
Two CD set with 50 tracks featuring some of the best recordings made between 1923 and 1930 by this hot dance band including their big hits Somebody Stole My Gal/ Piccolo Pete and the Man From The South With The Big Cigar. Other tracks include Big Boy/ If I Ever Cry/ I'm Going To Park Myself In Your Arms/ Miss Annabelle Lee/ Cobble-Stones/ Who Wouldn't Be Blue?/ You're The Cream In My Coffee, etc. Weems had a lengthy career and later in his career was responsible for discovering Perry Como.


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