(February 20, 2017): Jack Teagarden and His Orchestra – High Society

From the 1956 album, Big T.  My Grandparents had this album – wish my Dad had saved it and others – but this song in particular hooked me on hot jazz even though there was a period in my youth when I thought I was pretty uncool for liking the genre.  Edmond Hall cooks on clarinet and Jimmy McPartland blows that trumpet. Teagarden, of course, cut his teeth with the biggies Louis Armstrong, Eddie Condon, Red Nichols, Paul Whiteman, etc.

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(February 13, 2017): Phoenix – Everything is Everything

From the 2004 album, Alphabetical.  The French Versailles band with the hits. I recall streaming KCRW at the time of this release and hearing it constantly. Many good memories around the entire LP right before a two year visit to the University of Michigan Law School starting in 2008.




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(February 5, 2017): An Anton Ditty – America, America, This is You

Here is one that Tom knocked out today – not doubt about his parentage – to the tune of America’s Funniest Home Videos. He goes at speed, then I try to get in the act with a lame bass line.


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(January 31, 2017): Lionel Hampton – Vibraphone Blues

From the 1965 album, You Better Know It!!!. One of the great things about practicing law in Idaho during the mid-late 1980s was the Annual Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival held in Moscow, Idaho, at the University of Idaho’s Kibbie Dome.  This was at a time Hampton was still appearing and jamming on both vibes and piano.  This tune is a Hampton original. Recorded and mastered by Rudy Van Gelder in his New Jersey studio. With a stellar lineup – Ben Webster, Clark Terry, Hank Jones, Milt Hinton and Osie Johnson.


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(January 25, 2017): Art Pepper – Bernie’s Tune

From the 1959 album, Art Pepper + Eleven.  This album is a collection of classic covers. Pepper was a West Coaster who cut his teeth playing with Benny Carter’s band. Bernie’s Tune was written in 1953 by Bernie Miller (with lyrics later added by Jerry Leiber and Mike Stoller). It was popularized by Gerry Mulligan 1954. Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich jammed on it in ’55. And it has been covered countless times since.

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A Springsteen Cover Band Is a Fitting Choice for Trump’s Inauguration – The New Yorker

Absolutely fitting. An imposter band for an imposter President.


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(January 13, 2017) – John Carradine – Night Train to Mundo Finé

The title track from the 1966 B-movie (and that’s being generous), Red Zone Cuba (aka Night Train to Mundo Finé). I intended to put up Tennessee Ernie Ford singing his hokey 195o b-side single  “The Cry of the Wild Goose” tonight, after it came up on a random rotation during the drive home. Instead, my son brought to my attention a baritone actor, John Carradine (of Grapes of Wrath fame), singing an even hokier tune to open this nutty movie about prospectors after treasure in a Cuban tungsten mine who get caught up in the Bay of Pigs – happily unknown to me until now. The song, though, is too rich not to put up:

I’m on this ride
because I have no pride
in myself, or in men, or in God.

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