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From Spirituals to Swing: The Legendary 1938 & 1939 Carnegie Hall Concerts
     

From Spirituals to Swing: The Legendary 1938 & 1939 Carnegie Hall Concerts

 
For producer John Hammond, the most important behind-the-scenes figure in American music, nothing was too ambitious. No better example can be found than his Carnegie Hall "From Spirituals to Swing" concerts of 1938 and 1939. Aiming to present an overview of African-American music, Hammond brought together gospel, blues, boogie-woogie and Dixieland as well as swing

Overview

For producer John Hammond, the most important behind-the-scenes figure in American music, nothing was too ambitious. No better example can be found than his Carnegie Hall "From Spirituals to Swing" concerts of 1938 and 1939. Aiming to present an overview of African-American music, Hammond brought together gospel, blues, boogie-woogie and Dixieland as well as swing performers including Sony Terry, Big Bill Broonzy, the Mitchell Christian Singers, the Golden Gate Quartet, Albert Ammons, Joe Turner, Sidney Bechet, James P. Johnson, Count Basie, Lester Young, Charlie Christian, and Benny Goodman. Live recordings of both years' shows, along with an additional studio date that brought together some of the star players from Count Basie's band were issued in the 1960s. Now, assembled in a three-CD set, FROM SPIRITUALS TO SWING casts light on a time when the originators of American vernacular music were alive, well, and ready to make joyful sounds. Highlights abound: Sonny Terry's whooping harmonica calls; trumpeter Hot Lips Page sitting in with the Basie band; Charlie Christian jamming with Lester Young; Big Bill Broonzy singing the blues with pianist Albert Ammons; Ida Cox accompanied by James P. Johnson and Basie-band members; Benny Goodman leading his stomping sextet with Christian, vibist Lionel Hampton, and pianist Fletcher Henderson on board; the gospel groups raising the roof. From the sound of the consistently jubilant music, the social and aesthetic significance of the concerts was lost on no one. No listener with a feeling for the roots of American music will miss the joy either.

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Bruce Eder
This two-CD set was, in its time, considered a prime live music document of its period, capturing performances by Benny Goodman and a host of other jazz, blues, and gospel performers at a legendary Carnegie Hall concert (most renowned among blues enthusiasts because concert organizer John Hammond headed south seeking Robert Johnson as a performer, only to learn of his death, and choosing Big Bill Broonzy to play in Johnson's place). The recordings were surprisingly good for their time, and as a musical document this show was about equal in importance to Goodman's own 1938 Carnegie Hall concert. This version is still worth hearing and owning (especially for those living on a budget), although Vanguard has superceded it with a much more extensive (and expensive) box set that assembles tapes found since the original LP release, and identifies tapes that were re-recordings of material done at the concert.

Product Details

Release Date:
08/24/1999
Label:
Vanguard Records
UPC:
0015707016926
catalogNumber:
70169

Tracks

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Big Bill Broonzy   Guitar,Vocals,Track Performer
Sonny Terry & Brownie McGhee   Track Performer
Big Joe Turner   Vocals
Golden Gate Quartet   Track Performer
Albert Ammons   Piano,Track Performer
Gene Ammons   Track Performer
Count Basie   Piano,Track Performer
Charlie Christian   Electric Guitar
Buck Clayton   Trumpet
Ida Cox   Vocals,Track Performer
Harry Edison   Trumpet
Benny Goodman   Clarinet,Track Performer
Freddie Green   Guitar,Rhythm Guitar
Lionel Hampton   Vibes
Helen Humes   Vocals,Track Performer
James P. Johnson   Piano,Track Performer
Peter Johnson   Piano,Track Performer
Jo Jones   Drums
Jonah Jones   Track Performer
Jimmy Rushing   Vocals
Buddy Tate   Tenor Saxophone
Lester Young   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Benny Morton   Trombone
Joe Turner   Track Performer
Walter Page   Bass
Bull City Red   Washboard,Track Performer
Tommy Ladnier   Trumpet
Sidney Bechet   Soprano Saxophone
William Brown   Tenor (Vocal)
Shad Collins   Trumpet
Herschel Evans   Tenor Saxophone
Nick Fatool   Drums
Fletcher Henderson   Piano
Jones   Track Performer
Meade "Lux" Lewis   Piano,Track Performer
Dan Minor   Trombone
Page   Track Performer
Hot Lips Page   Track Performer
Sonny Terry   Harmonica,Vocals,Track Performer
Sister Rosetta Tharpe   Track Performer
Earle Warren   Alto Saxophone
Jack Washington   Baritone Saxophone
Dicky Wells   Trombone
Sterling A. Brown   Track Performer
Benny Goodman & His Orchestra   Track Performer
Benny Goodman Sextet   Ensemble
Count Basie Orchestra   Track Performer
Ed Lewis   Trumpet
New Orleans Feetwarmers   Ensemble
Arthur Bernstein   Bass
Sam Bryant   Bass (Vocal)
Louis David   Baritone (Vocal)
Kansas City Five   Track Performer
Kansas City Six   Ensemble,Track Performer
Mitchell's Christian Singers   Ensemble,Track Performer
Tommy Ladiner   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Leroy Carr   Composer
Johnnie "Geechie" Temple   Composer
Big Joe Turner   Composer
George Gershwin   Composer
John Sebastian   Liner Notes
Albert Ammons   Composer
Harry Edison   Liner Notes
Benny Goodman   Composer
Lionel Hampton   Composer
Peter Johnson   Composer
Fats Waller   Composer
John Hammond   Producer,Liner Notes
Andy Razaf   Composer
Steve Buckingham   Liner Notes,Reissue Producer
Ira Gershwin   Composer
Meade "Lux" Lewis   Composer
Sister Rosetta Tharpe   Composer
Spencer Williams   Composer
Charles Edward Smith   Liner Notes
Sydney Robin   Composer

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