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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



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JACK TEAGARDEN /
BOBBY HACKETT

Complete Fifties Studio Recordings

Phoenix 131523

 

 


Coast Concert
1. Struttin' With Some Barbecue
2. Muskrat Ramble
3. New Orleans
4. Basin Street Blues
5. St. James Infirmary
6. That's A Plenty
7. I Want A Big Butter And Egg Man
8. Fidgety Feet
9. Royal Garden Blues
10. I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plan

Jack Teagarden - Trombone, vocals
Bobby Hackett - Cornet
Abe Lincoln - Trombone
Matty Matlock - Clarinet
Don Owens - Piano
Nappy Lamare - Guitar, banjo
Phil Stephens - Bass, tuba
Nick Fatool - Drums

Jazz Ultimate
11. Indiana
12. It's Wonderful
13. Way Down Yonder In New Orleans
14. `S Wonderful
15. Baby, Won't You Please Come Home
16. I Found A New Baby
17. Mama's Gone, Goodbye
18. Oh Baby
19. Sunday
20. Everybody Loves My Baby
21. 55th And Broadway
22. Indiana
23. 55th And Broadway

Jack Teagarden - Trombone, vocals
Bobby Hackett - Cornet, trumpet
Peanuts Hucko - Clarinet, tenor sax
Ernie Caceres - Baritone sax, clarinet
Gene Schroeder - Piano
Billy Bauer - Guitar
Jack Lesberg - Bass
Buzzy Drootin - Drums

 

Jack Teagarden and Bobby Hackett were two seminal figures in the style of jazz that is called Dixieland. Teagarden was probably the most influential pre-bop trombonist with a fluid approach, as well as a renowned singer who sang in the same fashion as he played his instrument. Hackett focused on the cornet, and was considered the heir to Bix Beiderbecke, but additionally was a sweet trumpeter. Phoenix Records has re-issued Coast Concert/Jazz Ultimate in a two-for-one package; both discs are considered the best pieces of work representative of their style.

While Coast Concert might suggest a live recording, it was not. At the same time as attending the Dixieland Jubilee in California in 1955, Hackett and Teagarden along with some old friends went into the studio to record what turned out to be this classic album, filled with well-known pieces from the Dixieland repertoire. Given the quality of the players on the session, it is not surprising that there was some top-notch playing with the musicians pushing each other to perform at their best. However it was Hackett and Teagarden that carried the load, starting with Struttin' With Some Barbecue, where Hackett's musicality is in the forefront with some solos of invariable taste. It's no small wonder that Teagarden's singing attracted so much attention, as demonstrated by his uncomplicated vocal style on Basin Street Blues and St. James Infirmary. There are no duds on this session whether it is the rousing That's A Plenty, or the beautifully constructed I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plan where Teagarden offers a gorgeous introduction and a delicate solo.

Capitol Records, who did the original recording of Coast Concert, were so taken with the public response that they brought back Hackett and Teagarden in 1957 for a follow-up session entitled Jazz Ultimate. While the other front-line musicians were different from the first recording, the final product was no less enticing. However, if there is one thing that might diminish this album from the first outing, it is the lack of vocals by Teagarden. Be that as it may, the performances by the band are superb and Hackett and Teagarden remained in peak form. This is happy toe-tapping music and is bound to bring a smile to the face of each and every listener, whether it comes from the wonderful two-bar introduction by pianist Gene Schroeder on Indiana, Hackett's pitch-perfect trumpet on Way Down Yonder in New Orleans or Teagarden who literally takes control on Baby Won't You Please Come Home and gives a master class of down-to-earth virtuosity.

This disc is probably one of the best two-fers in the market today.

Pierre Giroux



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