411

Various Artists: Deacon John's Jump Blues: Celebrating New Orleans Music

Tod Smith By

Sign in to view read count
Various Artists: Deacon John's Jump Blues: Celebrating New Orleans Music From the opening salvos of Ray Charles’ "Jumpin’ In the Morning" to the closing notes of Jimmie Cox’ "Nobody Knows You," it is easy to hear that Deacon John’s Jump Blues is an unadulterated celebration of New Orleans’ own brand of rhythm and blues. This blend of gospel, blues, soul and of course jazz, is music by which to celebrate life in all its joys, sorrows, disappointments and accomplishments.

Jeff Hannusch writes of Deacon John Moore, “In a career that spans more than 40 years, Deacon John has endured as one of New Orleans’ most talented – and most musically adaptive – performers.” Indeed his guitar playing made him a fixture on all the top records produced at Cosimo Matassa’s legendary studio in the late' 50s and early '60s, including Aaron Neville’s "Tell It Like It Is" and Chris Kenner’s "Land of 1,000 Dances." But this recording session puts Deacon John center stage with assists from legendary New Orleans performers Dr. John, Allen Toussaint and Wardell Quezergue. Add to this the talents of more than a dozen of New Orleans best session players and rising stars and you have tomorrow’s music history lesson being played today.

The disc opens with "Jumpin’ in the Morning," a classic jump blues first recorded by Ray Charles. Here, Deacon John’s unique vocal styling is showcased, along with the incomparable drumming of Herlin Riley. Riley, at home in any musical genre, never ceases to amaze and only his live playing can rival his recorded music. The unique nature of this project (a companion live concert DVD is also available) serves to underscore his ability. Other highlights include collaborations with Henry Butler ("Big Chief") and a sophisticated jump blues cover of Joseph Liggins’ "Going Back to New Orleans."

If Deacon John and the other front-liners give the project its soul, then the big band section provides its heart. Jump blues is a musical genre steeped in the tradition of making people dance and it’s the role of the big band section to get the audience swinging. Make no mistake, this section swings with the best and is based in a jazz tradition. With the personnel on hand, it’s hard to believe that this group does not perform together regularly. Check out "Going Back to New Orleans" for a complex, syncopated sound reminiscent of big band arrangements from the '40s.

Music permeates New Orleans society and musicians can be found everywhere. For example, baritone saxophonist Carl Blouin, Sr. is finance director for a local high school by day and has spent years as a math instructor, high school principal and music teacher. Among those he numbers among his former students are director of jazz studies at the Julliard, Victor Goins and jazz trumpeter/composer/educator Terence Blanchard.

With the studio CD, concert DVD, DVD-A and a forthcoming documentary feature film, it appears that this much-needed preservation of New Orleans music has begun in earnest.

Visit www.deaconjohnsjumpblues.com .

Track Listing: 1. Jumpin

Personnel: Various Artists

Year Released: 2003 | Record Label: Image Entertainment | Style: Straight-ahead/Mainstream


Shop

More Articles

Read LifeCycle CD/LP/Track Review LifeCycle
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Right Up On CD/LP/Track Review Right Up On
by Roger Farbey
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Wanderlust CD/LP/Track Review Wanderlust
by Bruce Lindsay
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Evolution CD/LP/Track Review Evolution
by Greg Simmons
Published: April 23, 2017
Read Imagination CD/LP/Track Review Imagination
by Geannine Reid
Published: April 23, 2017
Read On A Monday Evening CD/LP/Track Review On A Monday Evening
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: April 22, 2017
Read "Live in Athens, Greece" CD/LP/Track Review Live in Athens, Greece
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: April 29, 2016
Read "Risc" CD/LP/Track Review Risc
by Mark Corroto
Published: July 29, 2016
Read "Live At Zaal 100" CD/LP/Track Review Live At Zaal 100
by John Sharpe
Published: June 24, 2016
Read "Roots Of Unity" CD/LP/Track Review Roots Of Unity
by Roger Farbey
Published: January 25, 2017
Read "Mu" CD/LP/Track Review Mu
by Glenn Astarita
Published: December 30, 2016
Read "Invention of Knowledge" CD/LP/Track Review Invention of Knowledge
by Glenn Astarita
Published: September 9, 2016

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!