[Dixielandjazz] The backup on JJ Johnson

Robert Smith robert.smith at tele2.no
Sat Jun 24 02:05:15 PDT 2006

I've just found out that I have one track by "J.J" in my collection. This is 
"Indiana" and sounds like a quartet with solo trombone accompanied by piano, 
double bass, and drums. I can quite understand why people would think he was 
playing a valve trombone, because he plays like a classical trombonist 
reading his part. Apart from the opening and closing bars, he doesn't play 
"Indiana" but plays a selection of other tunes plus some high-register 
gymnastics, just as any classically trained trombonist would play them.

I don't think anyone has ever dared to try and define "dixieland", but if 
they, or I, ever did then I think that glissandi, vibrato, and a natural 
trombone sound would be part of the definition. "J.J." exhibits none of 
these, so I think it highly improbable that I shall be increasing my 
collection of his records.


Bob Smith

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