Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Songs We Taught Your Mother
Genres: Blues, Jazz, Pop, Broadway & Vocalists
In 1961 jazz-backed blues seemed slack, almost nonexistent. Bebop, hard bop, tenor sax & organ combos, and the avant-garde were more relevant in the jazz world. And blues was veering toward an electrified, altogether diffe... more »
Listen to Samples
In 1961 jazz-backed blues seemed slack, almost nonexistent. Bebop, hard bop, tenor sax & organ combos, and the avant-garde were more relevant in the jazz world. And blues was veering toward an electrified, altogether different realm. So when Chris Albertson brought Alberta Hunter, Victoria Spivey, and Lucille Hegamin to the acclaimed Rudy Van Gelder's studio to capture songs from the era when jazz and blues melded together, the result could've easily sounded thinly nostalgic. But with a backing band that included pianist Willie "the Lion" Smith (on Hegamin's four tunes) and trombonist J.C. Higginbotham and clarinetist Buster Bailey (on the four tracks from both Hunter and Spivey), this session came out topnotch. It's redolent of an earlier era (specifically the early 1920s, when the three singers got their starts), but each of the tracks is potent with a deep, slow swing accentuating the peerless vocals. Spivey's grainy voice is impassioned and powerful, in the same way that Hunter's is unmistakable in its slight waver, carrying her sometimes near-spoken lines to the stars (especially as she delivers jewels like this: "I don't like those hepster lovers / They've got larceny in their eyes / They got a handful of gimme / And a mouthful of much obliged"). The acoustics are as sharp as any of Van Gelder's sessions, and the music is majestic. --Andrew Bartlett
Sasha | at sea...sailing somewhere | 02/28/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Every time I listen this album,I feel like a proud father who have to choose which one is his favourite daughter.As the big fan of 1920's classic female blues,I find this album simply irressistible.Since the biggest and the most talented names (Ma Rainey,Bessie Smith)were dead until 1940's,Chris Albertson (author of Bessie Smith biography) saved music of survived contemporaries Victoria Spivey,Alberta Hunter and Lucille Hegamin for new generations of music lovers.All three of them,in my opinion,sound better and more enthusiastic then in their younger days,althought true to be told,only Spivey would fitt in the blues category,while Hegamin and Albert represent old-time vaudeville tradition.Wonder why Sippie Wallace and Ida Cox (still recording at the time of this album) were not invited... While Spivey and specially Hunter recorded long afterwards,this was the last time we heard from wonderful,clear-voiced Hegamin who was obviously enjoying herself on these recordings.She sounded like enthusiastic school girl trapped in a body of older woman!My only regret is that,althought this album was recorded in one day,the chance to hear these three voices singing together was missed,we only hear each of them separatedly."
On my top ten list...
ab | ca | 01/30/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Alberta Hunter, Victoria Spiver, and Lucille Hegiman all blues veterens from the 20's sound wondeful, torchy and playful accomanied by top jazz players. Excellent LP. Recommended especailly to jazz vocal fans."
Bard of the Last Resort | Eminence, MO USA | 07/29/2008
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I just received this CD, popped it in my car's CD player and, instantly, a smile came to my face with the first vocalized note. The sound is excellent, The back up musicians deep and superb, the voices clear and the mix excellent for hearing every word. I will play this CD to death."