Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
mmilovan

Jimmy Dorsey

33 posts in this topic

Jimmy Dorsey. Anyone?

For past few days I've been watching you tube extensively, and found some clips with Jimmy Dorsey and his band:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y6j9gzILItM

Also with the band called The Capitolians (around 1928):

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjVP81wSZ4w

Now, I know what Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey band really was during beginning of 1930s, but I always listened to Tommy more than Jimmy Dorsey.

Now, when I saw "Man, That's Groovy" I finally realized what Jimmy really was capable of.

If you listen closely to his clarinet playing, you will almost hear Benny Goodman and Artie Shaw in one person - great tone with perfect control over any register and great swing. In addition, I'm almost certain that Bird heard Dorsey and his perfect, airy phrase and usage of grace notes...

So, my question is: do you like Jimmy Dorsey?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Lots of love and respect for Jimmy Dorsey's playing here. I think he's one of the unsung heroes of Jazz and I believe his influence is much more pervasive than most realize. I was only 10 when he died but I remember him as a star. I remember the Dorsey Brothers TV show and it seemed to me Tommy and Jimmy Dorsey were household names as I was growing up. I also remember him more as an alto player than clarinetist, although "Dixie By Dorsey", an album where Jimmy plays clarinet exclusively was among the first jazz I ever heard. A favorite Uncle had it on 78 and played it often.

The point I'm trying to make is that perhaps he was so pervasive, so "in the air", that his playing was a very big influence, but in a sense he was taken for granted. He had chops galore and a great sound - I'm sure the musicians of the time were listening and digging him - they had to be. I think Bird is one of the few who acknlowedged Jimmy and I think that speaks well to Bird's candor and honesty.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Harold, you're really right I think.

The Jimmy recordings that I reach for are the four volumes on Jazz Oracle that feature recordings of Jimmy and Tommy mostly as sidemen in the early days. Fantastic fun stuff!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What I'm missing from the whole picture is theirs band after they made reunion - how it sounds.

And of course, hearing Jimmy's own band is never enough experience, even with vocal numbers. Helen O'Connell was very good girl singer, to my ears.

Edited by mmilovan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

To fuel this debate a little, just a hint that JD has been discussed extensively elsewhere:

http://forums.allaboutjazz.com/showthread.php?t=18394

Enjoy! :D

:D

my favorite passage (as it really emphasizes the competitive spirit of the discussion) is

Jazz is the art of improvisation between musicians.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jimmy Dorsey is quite interesting and a great, imnportant player - some years ago I was doing some 78 transfers for a small label reissue of the Jimmy Dorsey band from 1940-1942; the CD was never put out, but I was astounded by what I heard - INSTANTLY I could hear, for this era, why Charlie Parker mentioned Jimmy D. as an influence - his time was near-boppish, his solos very much based on the newly-emerging eigth note rhythm; to top it off, one of the pieces (can't tell the name now, would have to go back) had the band playing the phrase which would be adapted by Dizzy as part of the intro to Round Midnight and which also became one of the phrases of Damerson's If You Could See Me Now - don't know who did it first, but I was quite amazed -

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think that Dorsey recording is "Grand Central Getaway." Gillespie is listed as a co-composer and arranger. That was a fine, distinctive band.

Edited by Larry Kart

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jimmy Dorsey is quite interesting and a great, imnportant player - some years ago I was doing some 78 transfers for a small label reissue of the Jimmy Dorsey band from 1940-1942; the CD was never put out, but I was astounded by what I heard - INSTANTLY I could hear, for this era, why Charlie Parker mentioned Jimmy D. as an influence

Sorry to hear this never came out, Allen--I would've definitely picked it up. I have the Circle transcriptions, the Decca CONTRASTS compilation, and some airshots from roughly that period. I liked Joe Lippman's work in that band. Too bad Chronological Classics hasn't gotten around to reissuing this music (or have they?).

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Too bad Chronological Classics hasn't gotten around to reissuing this music (or have they?).

Classics has not reached the half mark for the Tommy Dorsey material. They have not been into Jimmy Dorsey yet!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jimmy Dorsey was a virtuoso, and that must be respected for what it is, which is nothing insignificant. Anything beyond that's a matter of taste, but anybody who won't/can't cop to that much is a fool.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

the interesting thing about those recordings I was transferring is how much Dorsey's interaction with the band sounded like Bird's with McShann - it was very surprising - true, he was not a jazz soloist like Bird was (as a matter of fact his playing sometimes reminds me of whats-his-name, the alto who recorded jazz and pop for King Records - damn, can't think of his name - in that he is more of a "player" than an improviser) - however, there are times he gets something quite advanced out -

Larry - I don't think it was Grand Central Getaway - as I recall it was a vocal, though I am not certain - will have to pull out the 78s, which I still have. The reissue never happened because the 78s were in such lousy shape and could not be restored to CD quality - but I still have them; if I can find the CDR with them I'll listen to it; otherwise I am tempted to go back to the 78s, which are still in my basement -

Edited by AllenLowe

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allen, are you thinking of Earl Bostic?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Allen, are you thinking of Earl Bostic?

That's the name that came to my mind as well.

Didn't Berigan start a thread a few months ago about a bop-sounding instrumentalist in the Jimmy Dorsey orchestra--or at least a player who seemed to be anticipating bop?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It would be interesting to listen to Bird and Jimmy one after another. My ears are not that precise, but I'm almost certain Bird developed some phrases and devices right from Jimmy.

And that IS really important.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

yes, Bostic - the Dorsey solos from this time are really remarkable -

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello out there! I am a newbie :excl:

mmilovan invited me from allaboutjazz.com because i started the jimmy dorsey topic there.

Every time Jimmy would come on the radio, Bird would stop every thing he was doing and sit with his eyes closed and listen to Jimmy's light sound and triplets.

I think that that Jimmy indirectly invented bebop via Bird.

tell me what you think.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hello and welcome!

I'm almost certain there is story that tolds Parker listened closely to Dorsey. Beside fast triplets, slurs and light tone, there is something in way Parker deals with opening phrases very similar to Jimmy.

You can listen to early Jimmy Dorsey here:

http://mikesnoise.typepad.com/noisepage/20...al_victrol.html

(especially "Sensation Stomp" is interesting)

and watch early Jimmy Dorsey here:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjVP81wSZ4w

What band is it???

Oh, and another thing that amazed me the most in this clip: drummer tecnhique and stage stance... :excited:

Edited by mmilovan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jimmy Dorsey is one of my favorite altoists in the history of jazz. (One of my dozen favorites anyway.) An amazing player.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Jimmy Dorsey is one of my favorite altoists in the history of jazz. (One of my dozen favorites anyway.) An amazing player.

Here and there JD admirerers can read about so called "JD awfullness" regarding his "untuned tone" and another "gems". Judging from what I've heard, Dorsey never made mistake, his player capabilities were among most stabile and powerfull.

Sadly, his band is poorly documented in CD reissues.

But, here are some youtube links:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M6nFynnoJkg

Helen O'Connell was nice female bigband vocalist (recently mentioned "Man, That's Groovy" is even better)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r2n2aaghnM0

Edited by mmilovan

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

O.K. Jimmy Dorsey is my favorite, and when other people say that he is out of tune or "sour" :wacko: they are only listening to his later stuff, like in the fifties and that is only minorly "sour". In 1957 Jimmy's rocording of "So Rare" was at #2 on the charts and sold a million copies(his 4th million seller, "Amapola", "Green Eyes", and "Mria Elena" all from 1941) , Jimmy was presented with his only Gold Recored, 4 days beore he died. This is my fav. song. :excited:

Anyway, on that recored he was doing some pretty cool growaling lto and was little sour an the end. so listen for yourself go to this page and listen to "So Rare". Also check out the other songs i listed. even though they are pop tunes the are good. :D

http://amazon.com/o/ASIN/B000000CYG/ref=s9...;pf_rd_i=507846

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

"Amapola" and "Green Eyes" - are, as far as I know, two names for the same tune... But watching that film clip on youtube, and listening to that swing solo and arrangement reminds me that JD big band was (OK, to my ears) way better than TD, even when played ballads. Certainly, there were no big names like TD always hired, but it was strong, rich-sounded, very good swing band.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.