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From '50s NYC clubland, a Yma Sumac-inspired version of "Babalu" by jazz/calypso singer Phyllis Branch.
The radio showThe show is Lost Frequencies. Every Monday night from 9pm to 11pm (CST) on Marfa Public Radio I explore the atmospheric side of post-War music: bop & vocals, soul/R&B heartbreak, exotica & soundtrack moods, Latin jazz, oddball instrumentals, honky-tonk ballads, early electronics - even some dreamy '60s psychedelic pop. Tune in at Marfa Public Radio or at KRTS 93.5fm.
Category Archives: Jazz Obscura
The post-War decades were golden times for the torch-y, late-night jazz vocal. Swing-style jazz retained some of its earlier mainstream popularity but, by the late ’40s and ’50s, big bands were shrinking, their relevancy plateauing. Out of practical necessity, and … Continue reading
It was my pleasure recently to speak with Gina Bonati, daughter of the great post-War saxophonist Joseph “Mouse” Bonati,” one of the pioneers of bebop in New Orleans in the 1950s. I first covered Mouse back in this post on bebop from out-of-the-way cities. With … Continue reading
There were other significant New York City-based independent record labels – Riverside, Savoy, Atlantic, Clef/Norgran/Verve – that recorded modern jazz in the post-War decades, but, Blue Note aside, few would be so closely associated with the music as Prestige Records. … Continue reading
I put together a new mix for my Dutch compadre Cortez for the fifth anniversary of his fabulous Club Cortez blog. You can find it there now. Club Cortez has been around as long as Office Naps. Cortez’s tastes in … Continue reading
A great pleasure to hear recently from keyboardist Walt Bolen, who filled me in on the backstory behind his organ-led R&B exotica instrumental “Lion Hunt” (Pick-A-Hit 101, which I first wrote about at this ancient post), as well as some … Continue reading
It’s easy to forget how obscure, how underground bebop remained after its first flower in New York City in the ‘40s, and how rarely, even a decade later, it was recorded (and to a lesser degree, played) beyond New York … Continue reading
In the first half of the 1960s, when this week’s selections were recorded, exotica hadn’t waned as a commercial or creative force. And the Arabic world was one peculiar, and significant, branch of the exotica tree. It was a … Continue reading