Saturday, April 27, 2013

Bob Wilbur The Bechet Legacy CJ4 2013

Sidney Bechet passed fifty four years ago. A pioneer in jazz (he beat Louis Armstrong to the recording studio by several months), Bechet has never received the wide spread acclaim that is so deserving.

Fortunately we have Bob Wilbur and The Bechet Legacy to keep the flame alive and the joint jumping. Bechet was a tad over the top for his day and suspicions are this may be part of the reason for only gaining wide spread notoriety later in life. Focusing primarily on the clarinet and soprano saxophone left plenty of time for Bechet to become a viable force as a composer perhaps the first triple threat artist in the early stages of the improvisation music we have come to know as jazz.

This particular collection is a two disc set that pops in the tradition of the roots of the real deal players and pioneers that came out of New Orleans. Recorded in the early 80's there is a hard swing here that Bechet used to influence other icons including Benny Goodman. Glen Zootola co-leads this band on trumpet. A live recording including such standards as "Lady Be Good" and "Just One Of Those Things."

Incredibly entertaining and a well put together package recorded live.

3.5 Stars.

Tracks: Oh, Lady Be Good; Down In Honky Tonk Town; Coal Cart Blues; Egyptian Fantasy; Lazy Blues; Summer-Time; The Mooche; Daydream; Si Tu Vois Ma Mere; Dans Le Reu D'Antibes; I Keep Calling Your Name.
Disc Two- I Let A Song Go Out Of My Heart; China Boy; I Got It Bad And That Ain't Good; Just One Of Those Things; Polka Dot Stomp; Happiness Is Just A Thing Called Joe; Dear Old Southland; Promenade Aux Champs-Elysees; Georgia Cabin; Memories Of You; Swing That Music.

Additional Personnel: Mark Shane: piano; Butch Miles: drums; Mike Peters: guitar; Len Skeat: bass; Pug Horton: vocals.