Saturday, December 26, 2015

satchmo plays king oliver

Louis Armstrong returned to his roots with this high fidelity celebration of the music of his mentor.  It was Joe "King" Oliver that Armstrong credits with teaching him to play.  When Oliver left New Orleans for Chicago, Armstrong took his place in Kid Ory's band.  In 1922, Oliver invited Armstrong to join his Creole Jazz Band in Chicago.  After a few years, Armstrong would move on to form his Hot Five (after playing briefly with Fletcher Henderson) in 1925.

Decades later, after carving out a unique place in jazz, Armstrong went back to the old songs with his latest incarnation of All-Stars.  Satchmo Plays King Oliver was recorded in 1959 at Radio Recorders Studio in Hollywood, California over three days at the end of September and the beginning of October.  The sessions featured  Louis Armstrong on trumpet and vocal,  Trummy Young on trombone,  Peanuts Hucko on clarinet,  Billy Kyle on piano,   Mort Herbert on bass,  and  Danny Barcelona on drums.

Armstrong would express:    "Just want to say that music has no age. Most of your great composers-musicians-are elderly people, way up there in age-they will live forever. There's no such thing as on the way out. As long as you are still doing something interesting and good. You are in business as long as you are breathing. Yeah ... Of course there were many other greats before my time, and my days of the wonderful music that every musician were playing in New Orleans.  But to me Joe King Oliver was the greatest of them all.  He certainly didn't get his right place in the mentionings in Jazz history as he so rightfully deserved.  He was a Creator, with unlimited Ideas, and had a heart as big as a whale when it came to helping the underdog in music, such as me.  I was just a kid, Joe saw I had possibilities and he'd go out of his way to help me or any other ambitious kid who were interested in their instrument as I was.  When he played his cornet, there were always happiness.  Ad a certain closeness that he gave out whenever he played and whatever he played...Of course there have been many styles in music since those days and in my younger days, such as Bop-music of tomorrow-"progressive," "cool," etc.  But not anyone of them styles have impressed me as Oliver.  And the good ol musician played in those days what I am talking about.  The tail gate those street parades, funerals, lawn parties, balls, they're called Dances nowadays.  We didn't resort to different styles, etc, we just played good ragtime music, sweet when necessary.  All these different new styles of this day doesn't do anything for the kids to derive on, like the old timers did for us.  Ever since this new stuff has been in port, I myself has been for ever so long-trying to figure out what the modern musicians trying to prove.  And the only solution that I came to is, the majority of them are inferior musicians.  Where there would be a real solid note to be hit right on the nose, they would make a thousand notes, rather than attempt that one.  Screeching at a high note and praying to God that they'd hit it.  The results is a very few musicians are working nowadays.  The public itself gotten so tired of hearing so muchg modern slop until they refused to continue paying those big checks.  And now if you'll notice it, only the fittest are surviving.  No matter where-who I play with, I never forget my first love-real good music."

St. James Infirmary (Gambler's Blues)

live in Belgium, 1959 with the All-Stars, featuring Trummy Young, Peanuts Hucko, Billy Kyle, Danny Barcelona and Mort Herbert.

When it’s Sleepy Time Down South
(Back Home Again in) Indiana
Basin Street Blues
Tiger Rag
Now You Has Jazz
Love is Just Around the Corner
C’est si bon
Mack the Knife
Stompin’ at the Savoy
St. Louis Blues
Ko Ko Mo (I Love You So)
When the Saints Go Marching In
La Vie en rose

Satchmo Plays King Oliver

full album:

A1 St. James Infirmary (Gambler's Blues)
Arranged By – Armstrong*, Frey*
Written-By – Joe Primrose
A2 I Want A Big Butter & Egg Man
Written-By – Venable*
A3 I Ain't Got Nobody
Written-By – Graham*, Williams*
A4 Panama
Arranged By – Armstrong*, Frey*
A5 Dr. Jazz
Written-By – Oliver*, Melrose*
A6 Hot Time In The Old Town Tonight
Arranged By – Armstrong*, Frey*
B1 Frankie And Johnny
Arranged By – Armstrong*, Frey*
B2 I Ain't Gonna Give Nobody None Of This Jelly Roll
Written-By – C. Williams*, S. Williams*
B3 Drop That Sack
Written-By – Armstrong*, Holley*
B4 Jelly Roll Blues
Written-By – Morton*
B5 Old Kentucky Home
Arranged By – Armstrong*, Frey*
B6 Chimes Blues
Written-By – Oliver*

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