Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Deems' Last Stand
Darien Smith | Chicago, IL, USA | 05/02/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Groovin' Hard is Deems at his final, swinging best. Even though he has passed away, he still came on strong in his last recording, laying down a hard-driving drum beat for Groovin' Hard, the title track. The entire album is a veritable greatest hits selection that is right down from lovely "Cutie" straight through to Moten Swing, swinging so hard it will make you fall out of your chair. A great remembrance for a great legend."
The World's Fastest Drummer at age 85
Mack_T_Knife | USA | 08/17/2001
(4 out of 5 stars)
"Amazing Elbo Room (Corner of Lincoln & George Streets, Chicago IL) performance. Last released recording of an American drumming legend a la Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich. It is ironic that Barrett Deems' highest profile gig, touring with the Louis Armstrong All-Stars, found him very much out-of-place, reduced to playing in a Dixieland setting. In reality Deems had a lengthy career with other lesser-known highpoints. He was with Paul Ash's group when he was just 15 and had his own groups during much of the 1930s. Deems was with the Joe Venuti big band (1937-44), Red Norvo (1948), Charlie Barnet (1951) and Muggsy Spanier (1951-54); during that era he was billed almost accurately as "the world's fastest drummer." Deems was with Louis Armstrong during 1954-58, a period when he was criticized by many jazz writers despite giving the music his best effort. After playing with Jack Teagarden (1960-63) he settled in Chicago where he played locally with many top swing stars. Deems toured Eastern Europe with Benny Goodman's sextet in 1976 and visited South America with Wild Bill Davison. In later years Barrett Deems led a fairly modern big band in Chicago and he recorded a strong set with the orchestra for Delmark after he turned 80, his playing modelled after Buddy Rich; he died of pneumonia September 15, 1998. ~ Scott Yanow, All Music Guide"