[Dixielandjazz] Chicago 1964

Steve Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Thu Feb 1 17:43:35 PST 2007

Bill Haesler at bhaesler at bigpond.net.au wrote:

>> Steve wrote:
>> See below for the info on the right side of the page (click "more")<

> Bill wrote: 
> Oh dear!
> I read that blurb just before we went into the city to shop.
> Looks like I need new glasses!
> But at least I got Wettling right.
>> Steve Wrote
>> Give the surprise vocalist a break. ........ I'm betting he did it with no
>> rehearsal.<
> It certainly sounds like it.
> Don't get me wrong, I am a great admirer of Sammy Davis. It is just that
> these entertainment people think they can get away with singing 'our jazz'
> without a run-through. You must get it all the time on your gigs.
> Even Bing Crosby has inflicted similar stuff on his old jazz mates (Louis
> included) which makes me cringe. And I like Bing too.

Steve answers:
Isn't that what jazz is all about? Here and now spontaneity? Don't all sorts
of "entertainment" people (musicians) routinely sing/play "our jazz"
wonderfully? Weren't Bing Crosby and Sammy Davis Jr., more hip to Dixieland
and jazz than most of us who play at it today? Wasn't Louis himself an
"entertainment" person?  etc., etc., etc.

Sure we get dumb ass sit-ins, but then every once in a while, an
"entertainment" person sits in and sings with us delivering an impromptu
performance that is absolutely stunning. Like the beautiful female lounge
piano player who would come in to see us every once in a while. She was the
stereotypical lounge entertainer. We had to beg her to sing a number with
us, but when she did, it was always excellent.

If the band listens to the singer and adapts, it is easy. Like the band did
not follow Sammy's attempt to speed the tempo a bit. For shame. Our
guitarist has a very neat saying: "We repair tunes." When we get a sit in,
the rhythm section "listens" and smoothes over the rough spots.

>> Surely Dixieland is the easiest form of jazz to play, no? (If not, what is?)
> Tex Wyndham used to regularly gather up high school jazz musicians at a jazz
> festival, give them a chord chart of a tune, talk about it for a while and
> then teach them to play respectable Dixieland in about a half hour.<
> Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm. You forgot the smiley and the VBG!

OK. :-) VBG. But lots of people in the OKOM festival audience pool love it.
BTW, what jazz form is easier to play?


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