[Dixielandjazz] LA Vintage Revival Bands

Marek Boym marekboym at gmail.com
Tue Dec 11 15:36:00 PST 2012

Most unfortunate, isn't it?
I remember complimenting the leader of the British Blue Magnolia Jazz
Band many years ago on his repertoire , as it hardly included a
"If I had to play the Dixieland standards, I'd die of boredom" (or
something to that effect) was his reply.  Still, the trad audience
wants to hear all the ridden-to-death warhorses.
I remembered asking a participant in the Mississippi RAg Forum whether
it had occurred to him that the musicians might be bored playing Royal
GArden Blues or ST. James' Infirmary for umpteen times.  His reply was
that if so, they shouldn't play traditional jazz.
Myself, I try to buy records with as few warhorses as possible.  In
the twenties, thirties and forties, the traditional repertoire was
almost endless!  But now, how many times have you heard "Delirium" or
"Feeling No Pain," for example, other than in the "tribute to..."
context?  And yes, stylistic changes as well.  Lu Watters and his
cohorts invented their own style while "reviving" jazz.  And, unlike
some traditionalists, I was extremely happy when I read about a band
influenced by Chris Barber.  Again, traditional, but with his own
style.  "British trad" was banjo-ridden, and often, especially in its
hey day as THE dance music of the day, not too great, but when one
heard it one could right away know it was British trad - a new style
based on the old tradition.  Which is as it should be.  Of course,
some people do indeed try to play exactly as the old bands, and mourn
the loss of audience, but their music is only a pastiche, so why
bother?  On the other hands, some bands, like "Muggsy Remembered,"
play Muggsy's music their own way.  Nobody could mistake them for
Muggsy.  Another wonderful example is the Dutch Swing College Band -
playing old music its own way.  So there still is hope!

On 12 December 2012 00:46, Rick Campbell <ricksax at comcast.net> wrote:
> I recall talking a few years back with the late piano player and leader Don Gibson (Sons of Bix, Al Capone Memorial Jazz Band) after he retired to Portland.
> He said, “You know what's the difference between dixieland music fans in 1925 and today? When today's older crowds come to a jazz festival, they expect to hear old music, played in the same old way. In 1925, if you went to hear Louis Armstrong, you wanted to hear new music; music composed yesterday, and performed in a way to surprise and delight you."
> So let's hope that the kids in LA are doing just that.
> Personally, I enjoyed the Vaud and Villans video. I liked the girls dancing in bustieres, but I can't remember exactly why any more....
> Rick Campbell
> Milneburg Social Aid and Pleasure Society Jazz Band
> Portland, Oregon USA
> 503-701-7356
> ricksax at comcast.net
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