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Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy
Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy
Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy
Genres: Jazz, Pop
 
  •  Track Listings (25) - Disc #1

Andy Kirk led one of the swing era's essential bands, a group that emerged in Kansas City in 1929 in the heated Kansas City milieu of the Walter Page and Bennie Moten bands. An essential component of Kirk's success was the...  more »

      
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CD Details

All Artists: Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy
Title: Andy Kirk & His 12 Clouds of Joy
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Asv Living Era
Original Release Date: 5/18/1993
Re-Release Date: 4/20/1994
Genres: Jazz, Pop
Style: Swing Jazz
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPC: 743625510829

Synopsis

Amazon.com
Andy Kirk led one of the swing era's essential bands, a group that emerged in Kansas City in 1929 in the heated Kansas City milieu of the Walter Page and Bennie Moten bands. An essential component of Kirk's success was the presence of Mary Lou Williams, who helped define the band's style, both as a pianist and composer. This CD surveys the Kirk band from 1929 to 1940 with some special emphasis on Williams's compositions. There are five tracks from 1929-30, the first phase in the band's recording career. Like many other groups of the time, it was simultaneously developing sectional play and the ability to swing. The first track, "Mess-a-Stomp," was Williams's first recorded arrangement, and the shifting parts show the influence of Jelly Roll Morton. After a six-year break in which Kirk's band did not record, they emerge as a full-blown and fluid swing band on Williams's "Walkin' and Swingin'." One of the band's most popular numbers, it's just one of this CD's high points. "Little Joe from Chicago," with Williams's great boogie-woogie piano and a band vocal, and the rocking "Dunkin' a Doughnut," both from 1938, show Williams as one of the swing era's most reliable riff specialists. Along with tenor saxophonist Dick Wilson, she's also one of the band's genuinely distinguished soloists. --Stuart Broomer

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CD Reviews

Essential listening
Candace Scott | Lake Arrowhead, CA, USA | 07/20/2003
(5 out of 5 stars)

"Andy Kirk's band was an incredible assortment of talent, from the incomparable Mary Lou Williams down to Andy himself. It's sad that he's a little bit overlooked today, because his band had a unique sound, style and swing element. He's not as elegant as Ellington or as polished as Basie, but he has a driving, ragged edge to his music which is addictive. Listen to the brass section on Gettin' off a Mess and the sax solos on Walkin' and Swingin'. Now that is pure music!My favorite track on this collection, and one of the greatest swing records of all-time, is Little Joe from Chicago. I love how the sidemen sing the chorus, "Little Joe from Chicago, never spent a day in school, little Joe from Chicago, never learned a grammar rule." Now this is hot stuff, classic material, a sound that will never be heard again. If you've never really listened to Kirk and the 12 Clouds of Joy, start right here. I bet you'll be hooked and play this disc over and over. He had a quality band, a unique style and the sound quality on this CD is excellent."