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Reviewers: Tony Augarde [Editor], Steve Arloff, Nick Barnard, Pierre Giroux, Don Mather, James Poore, Glyn Pursglove, George Stacy, Bert Thompson, Sam Webster, Jonathan Woolf



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SLIM GAILLARD

The Extrovert Spirit

Avid AMSC 1141

 

 

CD1

1. Vout Orenee

2. Slim’s Boogie

3. Harlem Hunch

4. Travelin’ Blues

5. Cement Mixer

6. Scotchin’ With The Soda

7. Dizzy’s Boogie

8. Flat Foot Floogie

9. Poppity Pop

10. Slim’s Jam

11. That Ain’t Right

12. Riff City

13. Mean Mama Blues

14. School Kids’ Hop

15. Opera In Vout: The Groove Juice Symphony - Hit That Jive Jack / C Jam Blues / Flat Foot Floogie / Big Noise From Winnetka

16. Arabian Boogie

17. Tip Light

18. Mama’s In The Kitchen

19. I Don’t Stand A Ghost Of A Chance

20. Down By The Station

21. Communications

Smorgasboard...help yourself!

22. Laughing In Rhythm

23. Soony-Roony

24. Oh, Lady Be Good

25. Sabroso

CD2

1. Babalu

2. Yo Yo Yo

3. For You

4. Yip Roc Heresy

5. The Hip Cowboy

6. Chicken Rhythm

7. St. Louis Blues

8. I Know What To Do

9. Taxpayers Blues

10. Eatin’ With Boogie

11. I Can’t Give You Anything But Love

12. Potato Chips

13. I’m In The Mood For Love

14. Mishugana Mambo

Slim Gaillard Rides Again!

15. Oh, Lady Be Good

16. I Don’t Stand A Ghost Of A Chance

17. How High The Moon

18. Slim’s Cee

19. One Minute Of Flamenco For Three Minutes

20. Chicken Rhythm

21. I Love You

22. Tall And Slim

23. My Blue Heaven

24. Thunderbird

25. Walkin’ And Cookin’ Blues

26. Sukiyaki Cha Cha

27. Don’t Blame Me

Collective personnel

Slim Gaillard – Vocals, guitar, piano, drums

Karl George, Dizzy Gillespie, Howard McGhee – Trumpet

Vic Dickenson, Bennie Green – Trombone

Jewell Grant, Charlie Parker – Alto sax

Marshall Royal – Clarinet

Lucky Thompson, Teddy Edwards, Wild Bill Moore, Jack McVea, Buddy Tate, Ben Webster – Tenor sax

Fletcher Smith, Dodo Marmarosa, Dick Hyman, Maceo Williams, Cyril Haynes – Piano

Wini Beatty – Piano, vocals

Ernie Shepard – Bass, vocals

Clyde Lombardi, Ray Brown - Bass

Leo Watson, Zutty Singleton, Herbie Lovelle, Charlie Smith, Milt Jackson – Drums

Pepe Benque - Bongoes

The album title is correct: Slim Gaillard was extrovert, but he was many other things in addition. He was a versatile musician, playing the guitar, piano, vibes and drums as well as singing. He was unique, in that nobody else devised recordings like his. And he was eccentric, at times almost to the point of lunacy. He invented his own language: Vout, which seemed to consist mainly of adding the syllables “vout” and “oreenee” to any expression, and throwing in a few other nonsense words for good measure.

His best recordings often found him in the company of bassists Slam Stewart or Bam Brown. Both Slam and Bam added their own special vocals: Slam by humming along to his double bass, and Bam crying out in a ludicrous falsetto. Gaillard also recorded with some of the finest jazz musicians around. This double album includes contributions from Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, Ben Webster and Dick Hyman. The personnels are often uncertain or unknown, with the added puzzle of finding Milt Jackson playing the drums on Potato Chips.

This album is almost worth buying for the guest stars, as it’s worth hearing their input. Ben Webster’s growling tenor sax keeps Potato Chips sizzling The most noteworthy offerings occur in tracks 7 to 10 of the first CD, where Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie add enormously to the appeal of these recordings, aided by tenorist Jack McVea and a rhythm section of Dodo Marmarosa, Bam Brown and Zutty Singleton. On Dizzy’s Boogie it sounds as if Slim is playing the piano in the two-fingered style of Lionel Hampton. Slim’s Jam is a wondrously laid-back piece, with Gaillard introducing each soloist in his loony Vout-speak.

The other highlight of the first CD is The Groove Juice Symphony (the last word is “Special” when introduced by Slim). This is performed by Gaillard and Bam Brown before an ecstatic audience, recorded at a Norman Granz concert in 1946. Slim switches from guitar to piano and then drums while Brown arouses huge laughter which makes you wish you were there to witness the proceedings.

Slim’s songs were generally blues with ridiculous vocals on top. But these recordings have a continuous good humour which is hard to resist. Most of then have been reissued repeatedly, but this double CD is as generous a collection as you’ll find – and well worth the bargain price.

Tony Augarde
www.augardebooks.co.uk



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