Early jazz stylists The Fat Babies' second album 18th & Racine is bolder than their first in their choice of material and their delivery of the songs included. Encouraged by the successful execution of their debut Chicago Hot (Delmark 2012) the band presents 14 lesser-known gems and an original composition by their cornetist Andy Schumm. The relative obscurity of these delightful pieces and the deftness by which the dust of history is polished off them exposes their raw emotion and makes for a very intriguing listening experience. Vocalist/multi-instrumentalist Charlie Gaines' whimsical I Can't Dance (I Got Ants in ...read more
What goes around comes around and time stands still in the future. The Fat Babies shows that, playing tunes from the '20s and '30s with exemplary flair. In this group, nostalgia turns out to be downright delicious.The septet is mellifluous as it unveils the heat and fervor of ragtime in a confluence that packs a great deal of punch. Its enthusiasm cannot be denied but it is its undoubted skill at parlaying the music into a living, breathing experience that makes the experience memorable.The good feel is enhanced by the arrangements. Sure, the preordained go-around by ...read more
What 's old is new again--or maybe it's more accurate to say, what used to be hip is hot again. The Fat Babies' Chicago Hot harkens back to the early jazz-blues amalgamation of King Oliver, and is as vibrantly interpreted by this seven-piece ensemble as it was when the music was originally pressed onto 78 RPMs. In the past decade, Hot Jazz has been steadily gaining fans as many contemporary musicians find new inspiration in these old forms. The Fat Babies is a very talented incarnation of this hep-cat renaissance.Borrowing mainly from the music of Chicago's famous South ...read more
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