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  1. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Five tracks recorded in L.A. in 1953 and 9 recorded in Ann Arbor, MI in 1954 with Russ Freeman (p), Carson Smith (b) and Larry Bunker playing drums on the first concert and Bob Neel on the second.
  2. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Disc 3 of 4, which covers the period from June - Dec. of 1932. You have to give Cab Calloway his due. He led an incredibly successful band in the midst of the Depression, no mean feat in itself. This disc has 23 tracks recorded in just 6 months. That's a lot of recording activity, so the record company must have been confident they could sell a lot of his records -- again, in the midst of the Depression, when most folks had to watch their nickels and dimes very carefully. And like most bands, his was probably touring at the same time, with a popular "name" band like his typically touring and playing 200+ gigs a year, with some of those gigs being theater engagements where they had to do like 8 shows a day. And audiences who came to see his band expected to hear Cab Calloway sing. Just as most all the songs here feature his vocals, I'm guessing the same was true of his band's live performances. That's a lot of wear and tear on the human voice. -- and even when he wasn't singing, audiences expected to see him dance and lead the band in his characteristically energetic fashion. To keep up that level of activity year after year is quite impressive. As far as the music goes, sure there are some dud, throwaway tunes that I guess the record company pushed on him, but like Fats Waller, he infuses his personality into them and at least tries to make something out of nothing. There are some classics here like "Reefer Man", "Old Man of The Mountain", "I Got A Right To Sing The Blues" and 'Gotta Go Places and Do Things". The remastered sound seems very good for recordings of this vintage. The band sounds like a very well-rehearsed, tightly knit group. Probably the most notable names in the band were Doc Cheatham, Walter Thomas and Eddie Barefield. For some reason, guitarist Roy Smeck guested on 2 tracks
  3. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    Fun album! I like the title track. Now playing: An excellent overview of the songs of Kurt Weill. The disc kicks off with Louis Armstrong's version of "Mack The Knife" and includes several other jazz or jazz related singers: Bing Crosby, Lee Wiley, Sarah Vaughan, June Christy, Lena Horne, Tony Bennett. Even Benny Goodman shares the vocal chores on "Jenny" with Helen Forrest. The lyricists who worked with Mr. Weill are quite an impressive group: Bertholt Brecht, Ira Gershwin, Alan Jay Lerner, Ogden Nash, Langston Hughes and Maxwell Anderson.
  4. So, What Are You Listening To NOW?

    That's one Mosaic set I wish I had bought. Unfortunately, I could not afford it back in the day when it was in print and, from what I've seen online, I sure can't afford it today.