Naughty, Bawdy and Blue

Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
The third in an awesome trilogy of albums in tribute to the towering female blues singers of yore, Maria Muldaur's Naughty, Bawdy & Blue reinvigorates timeless tunes originally etched into immortality by the likes of Bessie Smith, Sippie Wallace, Victoria Spivey, Ethel Waters, Ma Rainey, Alberta Hunter, and others. In a bit of a different tack than she employed on Richland Woman Blues (2001) and Sweet Lovin' Ol' Soul (2005), Muldaur enlists the estimable James Dapogny-led Chicago Jazz Band to add a little Dixieland flair and some small-band jazz flourishes to the proceedings. The result is a trip back in time to the smoke-filled speakeasies of the '20s and '30s. ...
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Editorial Reviews

Barnes & Noble - David McGee
The third in an awesome trilogy of albums in tribute to the towering female blues singers of yore, Maria Muldaur's Naughty, Bawdy & Blue reinvigorates timeless tunes originally etched into immortality by the likes of Bessie Smith, Sippie Wallace, Victoria Spivey, Ethel Waters, Ma Rainey, Alberta Hunter, and others. In a bit of a different tack than she employed on Richland Woman Blues (2001) and Sweet Lovin' Ol' Soul (2005), Muldaur enlists the estimable James Dapogny-led Chicago Jazz Band to add a little Dixieland flair and some small-band jazz flourishes to the proceedings. The result is a trip back in time to the smoke-filled speakeasies of the '20s and '30s. Against a sonic backdrop rich in trombone, trumpet, sax, clarinet, tuba, banjo, guitar, piano, bass, and drums, the husky-voiced red-hot mama wails Sippie's "Separation Blues" (joined by Bonnie Raitt), moans a remorse-filled "Empty Bed Blues" as if channeling Bessie, coos her way naughtily through the lubricious, double-entendre classic "Handy Man," and swaggers seductively through a mess of lascivious suggestiveness in Spivey's steady-rolling "One-Hour Mama." No longer the waif-voiced temptress of "Midnight at the Oasis," Muldaur now belts out the blues with the gravitas that comes from having lived for a while. Great songs, great fun, and indisputably great interpretive singing.
All Music Guide - Hal Horowitz
Maria Muldaur's trilogy of old-timey blues and jazz releases for the Stony Plain imprint she simultaneously records more contemporary music for the Telarc label concludes with this appropriately titled set. Much is made in the liner notes of the veteran jazz/blues/pop/gospel singer being mentored in her early jugband years by no less of an icon than Victoria Spivey, so it seems Muldaur feels this tribute to the style and material of Spivey and other "classic blues queens" of the '20s and '30s is a sort of closure. It is also a history lesson, with detailed booklet information, some of it written by Muldaur, providing fascinating capsule biographies of the women whose music is covered here. Muldaur sure has the pipes and integrity for this approach, alternatively playful, sexy and downtrodden, and these dozen tracks find her inspired both by the strong, occasionally humorous material and the superb backing musicians in James Dapogny's Chicago Jazz Band. There is no attempt to modernize these classic vaudeville and Dixieland era tunes; rather the intent is to be true to the original style with acoustic backing played in, and with, the spirit that made them so popular in their day. Muldaur invigorates the incessant double entendres that surely caused lecherous grins when listeners heard Bessie Smith's "Empty Bed Blues" or Spivey's "One Hour Mama" for the first time. Bonnie Raitt swings by for a cameo on Sippie Wallace's "Separation Blues," graciously not stealing the spotlight, but using her presence to pay tribute to one of her own inspirations. Other blues women covered here are Mamie Smith, Ma Rainey and Alberta Hunter. Muldaur's versions aren't simply covers, they reinvigorate the material, keeping the focus on the lyrics while Dapogny's group swings along. It's a fun, frisky and enlightening ride from a vocalist who has always promoted this music mixed in with her other styles, and an album that leaves the listener anticipating a follow-up.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 5/15/2007
  • Label: Stony Plain Music
  • UPC: 772532131926
  • Catalog Number: 1319
  • Sales rank: 116,299

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Maria Muldaur Primary Artist, Vocals
Jim Kweskin Indexed Contributor
Rod MacDonald Banjo, Guitar
Bonnie Raitt Vocals
James Dapogny Piano, Leader
Kim Cusack Clarinet, Alto Saxophone
Jon-Erik Kellso Trumpet
Kurt Krahnke Bass
Kevin Porter Trombone
Pete Siers Drums
Russ Whitman Clarinet, Baritone Saxophone, Tenor Saxophone
James Dapogny's Chicago Jazz Band Musician
David Matthews Piano
Chris Frazer Smith Trombone, Tuba
Dave Mathews Piano
Chris Smith Trombone
Russ Whitman Baritone Saxophone
Technical Credits
Alberta Hunter Composer
Mamie Smith Composer
Victoria Spivey Composer
Sippie Wallace Composer
Eubie Blake Composer
James Dapogny Arranger
Perry Bradford Composer
Maria Muldaur Producer, Audio Production
Andy Razaf Composer
John Jacob Mastering
J.C. Johnson Composer
John Penney Liner Notes
Holger Petersen Executive Producer
Rowland Salley Paintings
Ron Harwood Producer, Liner Notes, Executive Producer, Audio Production
Geoff Parsons Composer
Ryan Hertz Liner Notes
Eric Wojahn Engineer
Megan Acio Graphic Design
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