Early jazz era bandleader Jimmie Lunceford was mentioned in an earlier piece about the Cotton Club but I thought we should dig a little deeper into his story. After all, he was one of the best, even if his star has dimmed a little in the many years since his heyday. Born on a Mississippi … Continue reading Jimmie Lunceford Was The Real Thing
Once again I've discovered that something I'd always more or less ignored is actually a pretty good idea. I have a habit of doing that, unfortunately. When something new comes along I tend to think it's just a fad, and has nothing to offer me. I guess I'm the opposite of an early adopter. . … Continue reading A New Way To Listen
(Note: this is the last post I had ready to go before my hospital adventure. From now on I'll have to come up with some new ones, so wish me luck! BG) A good friend of mine, who has been gone for many years now, had a working vintage jukebox in his living room. But … Continue reading Jukeboxes I Have Known
I can remember hearing music by Enoch Light's orchestra many times through the years, but I now realize that I always had a few misconceptions about him. By the time I started noticing him in the 1950s and 1960s he was known as someone who specialized in cutting-edge music, and as a pioneer in producing … Continue reading The Two Eras Of Enoch Light
Some people say there's no such thing as a coincidence, mostly because they believe that things happen for a reason, either fate or a higher power. Logical statisticians will tell you that random pairings will always occur in large numbers of events. As for me, I'm not too sure how they happen but I believe … Continue reading Are Airships In Our Future?
I always thought Bent Fabric -- the pianist and composer who had a big hit with "Alley Cat" in 1962 -- had picked a strange stage name, one that sounded like a folded piece of cloth. But it turns out that it's almost his real name. The Danish-born musician, who is now in his nineties … Continue reading Yes, Bent Fabric Is For Real
I've mentioned a few times before that I played the clarinet as a kid (and compared myself to Benny Goodman) but I've also always had a fondness for the sound of a saxophone. I've never played one -- it was all I could do to manage the clarinet -- but I had a couple of … Continue reading What If Saxophones Had Never Been Invented?
An early jazz entertainer and songwriter, Una Mae Carlisle had a world of talent and a dazzling stage presence, all of which helped her become a popular star. Unfortunately her career was shortened by health problems, but for two decades she was a very successful part of the music scene. And it in no way … Continue reading Una Mae Met Fats And Sparks Flew
On at least two earlier posts on the GMC we featured a type of music known as Exotica. It seems only right to take some time to explore the genre a little, first by trying to define it and then by showcasing the guy who was sometimes called the 'Father of Exotica'. You could say … Continue reading Martin Denny And The Evolution Of Exotica
The story of today's Anatomy Of A Song starts with its composer, Mexican legend Consuelo Velázquez (Torres), who was often called Consuelito. She was 88 when she died in 2005, and had spun out a long and successful career as a pianist, singer, and composer. Many of the songs she wrote are still loved and … Continue reading Anatomy Of A Song – Consuelito’s Mexican Classic