[Dixielandjazz] Vince Giordano and The Flapper - Showmanship Revisited.
Stephen G Barbone
barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Wed May 23 06:53:04 PDT 2012
WOW, OKOM at a Premier NYC Venue. Check out the last paragraph. That's
what we say about current "music". Same S*** different day. <grin>. Is
this "art" music or sexy music? Methinks Sexy music, which is why it
was so popular among the young in the 1920s And why it spawned rants
against it like the one from the Ladies Home Journal below. Want to re
popularize it? THINK SEX.
Dangerous and Funny: She’s Still a Flapper
By Stephen Holden - NY Times - May 22, 2012
The flapper — the tough-talking party girl with bobbed hair, a
spangled headband and a shocking disdain for propriety — may be an
archetype associated with the 1920s. But since her ascendance, she has
never really disappeared. Wearing different outfits, the British bird
of the 1960s and the breakdancing b-girl of the 1980s are among
countless offshoots. Let’s not forget that defiant pop shape-shifter
Madonna, a flapper to her bones, no matter what she wears.
And now there’s Carole J. Bufford, a sizzling cabaret performer who in
her show “Speak Easy” at the Metropolitan Room offers the fullest
realization I can remember of a 1920s girl gone wild. Ms. Bufford has
a bright, rangy voice and big blue eyes that emit snapping electrical
charges. She can be dangerous, but she is also funny.
“Speak Easy” is a thoroughly researched informal history of pop during
the Prohibition era in which Ms. Bufford is joined by Vince Giordano
and the Nighthawks, New York’s premier vintage jazz band. Its theme is
announced by the bouncy “How Are You Going to Wet Your Whistle (When
the Whole Darn World Goes Dry?”) before she makes the plunge into Cole
Porter’s “Let’s Misbehave.” Spitting out Porter’s “Love for Sale,” she
embodies a hard-shelled prostitute radiating contempt.
Ms. Bufford celebrates the legendary saloonkeeper Texas Guinan, who
greeted customers with a hearty “Hello, suckers!” According to Ms.
Bufford, Guinan made $700,000, the equivalent of around $10 million
today, in only eight months.
Ms. Bufford bites into the dirty blues with a growling “You’ve Got the
Right Key, in the Wrong Keyhole”; leads an audience singalong of “Side
by Side”; and pays tribute to the proto-torch singer Vaughn De Leath,
once nicknamed the First Lady of Radio.
Some of the funniest bits at Saturday’s show are readings from popular
literature of the day. Here’s what an anti-jazz rant in a 1921 issue
of Ladies’ Home Journal had to say about “the sin in syncopation”:
“The effect of jazz on the normal brain produces an atrophied
condition on the brain cells of conception, until very frequently
those under the demoralizing influence of the persistent use of
syncopation, combined with inharmonic partial tones, are actually
incapable of distinguishing between good and evil, right and wrong.”
That’s quite a mouthful. Translated, it means that jazz will drive you
Carole J. Bufford will perform on Thursday and on June 16 at the
Metropolitan Room, 34 West 22nd Street, Manhattan; (212) 206-0440,
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