[Dixielandjazz] New Orleans Jazz

Stephen Barbone dhmp@neworleansjazz.com
Fri, 09 Aug 2002 18:21:54 -0400

List mates:

Just in case you missed this review:

Steve Barbone

The Washington Post
Monday, August 5, 2002
Style, Arts, Performing Arts

Original Dixieland, Growing From Its Roots

With plenty of New Orleans strut and brass, the Original Dixieland Jazz Band
swiftly turned back the clock to the dawn of the recorded jazz age during
its performance Saturday night at the Kennedy Center's millennium Stage.
	Under the direction of trumpeter Jimmy LaRocca, son of the band's founding
leader, James "Nick" LaRocca, the current ensemble performed both the A- and
the B-sides of the groundbreaking disc their predecessors made in 1917. The
latter, the million-selling "Livery Stable Blues," with its whinnying
trumpet lines, was wonderfully evocative of the era, as were "Tiger Rag" and
other ODJB staples.
	Not that the band displayed much interest in playing note-for-note
transcriptions of the original arrangements. "St. Louis Blues," which
suddenly veered off into swing territory, was perhaps the most obvious
example of the liberties taken throughout the concert. But no matter. The
front line featuring LaRocca, clarinetist Tim Laughlin and trombonist Steve
Suter is so well versed in traditional jazz polyphony that the band's
fundamental inspiration was always evident. Besides, the rhythm
section-pianist Tom Roberts, bassist Al Bernard and drummer David
Hansen-spent a lot of time underscoring familiar themes, sinuous
countermelodies and brassy interjections with infectiously syncopated beats
and Crescent City martial cadences. Laughlin, a veteran of several New
Orleans ensembles, often projected a sumptuous and woody tone, in sharp
relief to the sound of LaRocca's fiery trumpet and Suter's growling
	For the encore, LaRocca, whose vocals are inspired by Louis Armstrong,
offered the crowd a little lagniappe-a "ragged but right" version of "St.
James Infirmary."
									-Mike Joyce