First of the Singer Songwriters: Key Cuts 1924-1946

The First of the Singer Songwriters: Key Cuts 1924-1946

by Hoagy Carmichael
     
 

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Its title aside (which suggests that Hoagy Carmichael was a some distant forerunner of Jackson Browne or Dar Williams, a case that would be both difficult and a little absurd to make), there's no doubt that this four-disc, 101-track collection from English reissue label JSP is carefully and lovingly

Overview

Its title aside (which suggests that Hoagy Carmichael was a some distant forerunner of Jackson Browne or Dar Williams, a case that would be both difficult and a little absurd to make), there's no doubt that this four-disc, 101-track collection from English reissue label JSP is carefully and lovingly assembled, and it outlines an impressive and amazing legacy. Carmichael was technically a singer/songwriter, of course, in the sense that he was quite capable of performing his songs at a commercial level, and he certainly had a public persona as an unassuming, laid-back, slightly world weary but jivin' jazz cat out of Indiana, but his songs didn't depend on that persona in order to get across, and that, more than anything, sets him apart from most if not all of the so-called singer/songwriters of the present day. Carmichael is also different than the other great American jazz and pop song stylists of his time like the Gershwins, Cole Porter and Irving Berlin in a couple of important ways. He didn't necessarily need a lyricist, for one, although he worked frequently with great ones like Johnny Mercer, Mitchell Parish, Frank Loesser and Stuart Gorrell, and his songs only occasionally had romance as a central theme, preferring instead to deal with places, times and mindsets, with a song like "Georgia on My Mind" being a perfect example. It's a love song, certainly, but it is a love song to a place, and more specifically, to a place in time, and (as the title states) a place in mind. Even Carmichael's most famous composition, "Stardust," isn't so much a song about love as it is a song about thinking about a song about love, which makes it a love song one step removed. Songs like "Rockin' Chair," "Lazy River" and "In the Cool, Cool, Cool of the Evening" may be romantic in tone but they aren't love songs in any normal sense. Perhaps this is why Carmichael's melodies also do so well as instrumentals, since they depend more on mood, time and feel than any kind of romantic plot line. At the very least, Carmichael's songs are extremely versatile, which this expansive anthology makes clear. There are nine different versions of "Stardust" here done in almost every conceivable way (including by Carmichael himself), and almost that many versions of "Georgia on My Mind." The list of bandleaders compiled here tackling Carmichael tunes is simply mind blowing, including sides by Frank Trumbauer, Red Nichols, Paul Whiteman, Eddie Lang, Irving Mills, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, the Dorsey Brothers, Isham Jones and Bennie Moten, among many others. Songs are done fast, slow, and in-between, with sung lyrics and without them. They always work. Carmichael is featured singing and performing his own melodies on maybe a dozen tracks, and while his versions may not be -- and usually aren't -- the most definitive, they are in some ways the most revealing, as his everyman Joe perception of his work shines clear as a desk bell in that slightly weary and amused voice he had. This is a marvelous anthology, but it may be a bit too much for casual listeners who probably don't need to hear nine versions of "Stardust" to grasp its importance and power, and they may be better off with a single-disc collection like Bluebird's carefully selected Stardust Melody from 2002. Those interested in a deeper look at Carmichael's own versions of his work can turn to the exhaustive ten-disc In Person 1925-1955 box put out by Avid in 2006 or the wonderfully concise single-disc Hoagy Sings Carmichael from 1956. This set, meanwhile, balances between Carmichael's own versions of his compositions and key versions by other pop and jazz artists recorded between 1926 and 1946. All of these sets are excellent in their own way, framing the legacy of a very unique writer, one who wrote love songs to places and ideas, and in doing so, defined the concept of Americana in the purest sense.

Product Details

Release Date:
06/16/2009
Label:
Jsp Records
UPC:
0788065905927
catalogNumber:
959
Rank:
135241

Tracks

Disc 1

  1. Riverboat Shuffle
  2. Boneyard Shuffle
  3. Washboard Blues
  4. Washboard Blues
  5. Boneyard Shuffle
  6. Riverboat Shuffle
  7. One Night in Havana
  8. Stardust
  9. When Baby Sleeps
  10. Friday Night
  11. Washboard Blues
  12. So Tired
  13. March of the Hoodlums
  14. Walkin' the Dog
  15. Shim-Me-Sha-Wabble
  16. Smile
  17. Stardust
  18. Stardust
  19. March of the Hoodlums
  20. Walkin' the Dog
  21. Rockin' Chair
  22. Harvey
  23. Stardust
  24. March of the Hoodlums
  25. March of the Hoodlums

Disc 2

  1. Walkin' the Dog
  2. What Kind O' Man Is You?
  3. Rockin' Chair
  4. Manhattan Rag
  5. Manhattan Rag
  6. What Kind O' Man Is You?
  7. Barbaric
  8. High and Dry
  9. My Sweet
  10. Stardust
  11. Rockin' Chair
  12. Georgia on My Mind
  13. One Night in Havana
  14. Bessie Couldn't Help It
  15. Lazy River
  16. Papa's Gone Bye-Bye Blues (Jewish Boy Blues)
  17. Stardust
  18. March of the Hoodlums
  19. Come Easy, Go Easy, Love
  20. Georgia on My Mind
  21. Lazy River
  22. Stardust
  23. Georgia on My Mind
  24. Washboard Blues

Disc 3

  1. Daybreak
  2. In the Still of the Night
  3. Rockin' Chair
  4. After Twelve O'Clock
  5. Sing It Way Down Low
  6. Thanksgivin'
  7. Charlie Two-Step
  8. Old Man Harlem
  9. Old Man Harlem
  10. Snowball
  11. Snowball
  12. Snowball
  13. Lazy Bones
  14. Lazy Bones
  15. Lazy Bones
  16. One Morning in May
  17. Stardust
  18. Cosmics
  19. Washboard Blues
  20. Judy
  21. One Morning in May
  22. Moon Country (Is Home to Me)
  23. Moon Country (Is Home to Me)
  24. Moon Country (Is Home to Me)
  25. Down T' Uncle Bills

Disc 4

  1. Thanksgivin'
  2. New Orleans
  3. New Orleans
  4. Two Sleepy People
  5. New Orleans
  6. Hong Kong Blues
  7. Riverboat Shuffle
  8. Two Sleepy People
  9. Bread and Gravy
  10. Stardust
  11. Skylark
  12. No More Toujours l'Amour
  13. Vine Street Parade
  14. A World of No Goodbyes
  15. Sweet Lorraine
  16. The Whale Song
  17. How Little We Know
  18. Billy-A-Dick
  19. Hong Kong Blues
  20. Baltimore Oriole
  21. Stardust
  22. Memphis in June
  23. Doctor, Lawyer, Indian Chief
  24. Ginger and Spice
  25. Ole Buttermilk Sky
  26. Walk It Off
  27. It Ain't Gonna Be Like That

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Hoagy Carmichael   Primary Artist,Piano,Violin,Celeste,Cornet,Vocals,Soloist
Lonnie Johnson   Guitar
Henry "Red" Allen   Trumpet
Mildred Bailey   Vocals
Paul Barbarin   Drums
Danny Barker   Guitar
Count Basie   Piano
Bunny Berigan   Trumpet
Steve Brown   String Bass
Eddie Condon   Banjo,5-string Banjo
Bud Freeman   Tenor Saxophone
Benny Goodman   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Glen Gray   Alto Saxophone
Johnny Hodges   Alto Saxophone
Budd Johnson   Tenor Saxophone
Spike Jones   Drums
Gene Krupa   Drums
Eddie Lang   Guitar
Albert Nicholas   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Red Norvo   Xylophone,Vibes
Pee Wee Russell   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Tenor Saxophone
Artie Shaw   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Eddie South   Violin
Muggsy Spanier   Cornet
Rex Stewart   Cornet
Maxine Sullivan   Vocals
Jack Teagarden   Trombone
Joe Venuti   Violin
Fats Waller   Piano,Vocals
Ethel Waters   Vocals
Ben Webster   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Cootie Williams   Trumpet
Red Nichols   Trumpet
Luis Russell   Piano
Eddie Barefield   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Connee Boswell   Vocals
Tyree Glenn   Trombone
Nat Gonella   Trumpet,Vocals
Pee Wee Hunt   Trombone,Vocals
Jack Jenney   Trombone
Carl Kress   Guitar
Matty Matlock   Reeds
Miff Mole   Trombone
Benny Morton   Trombone
Todd Rhodes   Piano
Arnold Ross   Piano
Frankie Trumbauer   Reeds,C-Melody Saxophone,Vocals
Don Redman   Alto Saxophone
Carson Robison   Vocals
Coleman Hawkins   Tenor Saxophone
Freddy Gardner   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Russell Procope   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Bowlly   Vocals
Roy Smeck   Banjo,Guitar
Bubber Miley   Trumpet
Red McKenzie   Vocals,Comb
Wellman Braud   String Bass
Sonny Greer   Drums
Walter Page   Bass
Bernard Addison   Guitar
Louis Armstrong   Trumpet,Vocals
Sidney Arodin   Clarinet
Herman Autrey   Trumpet
Everett Barksdale   Guitar
Reginald Beane   Piano
Bix Beiderbecke   Cornet
Artie Bernstein   String Bass
Leroy Berry   Guitar
Vic Berton   Drums
Jimmy Bertrand   Drums
Barney Bigard   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Larry Binyon   Tenor Saxophone
Jack Bland   Guitar
Lester Boone   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Perry Botkin   Guitar
Tony Briglia   Drums
Arnold Brillhardt   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Scoville Brown   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Harry Carney   Alto Saxophone
Langston Curl   Trumpet
Charles Bud Dant   Cornet,Soloist
Kurt Dieterle   Violin
Jimmy Dorsey   Clarinet,Cornet,Alto Saxophone
Tommy Dorsey   Trombone
Duke Ellington   Piano
Eddie Durham   Guitar,Trombone
Fletcher Henderson   Piano
Pops Foster   String Bass
Fred Guy   Banjo
Joe Hall   Piano
Henry Hicks   Trombone
J.C. Higginbotham   Trombone
Teddy Hill   Tenor Saxophone
Milt Hinton   Bass,Vocals,String Bass
Clarence Holiday   Guitar
Charlie Holmes   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Hugo Winterhalter   Alto Saxophone
Preston Jackson   Trombone
Freddie Jenkins   Trumpet
Walter Johnson   Drums
Claude Jones   Trombone
Slick Jones   Drums
Joe Keyes   Trumpet
Stan King   Drums
Manny Klein   Trumpet
Ellis Larkins   Piano
Abe Lincoln   Trombone
John Lindsay   String Bass
Ella Logan   Vocals
Willie Lynch   Drums
George March   Drums
Jack Mayhew   Clarinet
Castor McCord   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
"Big" Mike McKendrick   Banjo
Willie McWashington   Drums
Glenn Miller   Trombone
Dan Minor   Trombone
Chauncey Morehouse   Drums,Vibes
Morgan   String Bass
Joe "Tricky Sam" Nanton   Trombone
George Oldham   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Hot Lips Page   Trumpet
Beverly Peer   Bass
Yank Porter   Drums
Zilner Randolph   Trumpet
Bill Rank   Trombone
Mischa Russell   Violin
Kenny Sargent   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Arthur Schutt   Piano
Gene Sedric   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Dee Stewart   Trumpet
Jim Taft   Bass
Juan Tizol   Valve Trombone
Jack Washington   Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Arthur Whetsol   Trumpet
Dave Wilborn   Banjo
Cliff Williams   Drums
Jack Williams   Drums
Victor Young   Violin
Sterling Bose   Trumpet
Helvetia "Vet" Boswell   Vocals
Martha Boswell   Piano,Vocals
Wally Gordon   Drums
Dick Kent   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Harold Matthews   Trombone
Dick McDonough   Banjo,Guitar
Harry Wilson   String Bass
Dick Robertson   Violin,Vocals
Roy Bargy   Piano
Jack Russin   Piano
Cuba Austin   Drums
John Cordaro   Reeds
Pat Davis   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Stanley Dennis   Bass,String Bass
Maurice Freedman   Tenor Saxophone
Jack Fulton   Trombone
Gene Gifford   Banjo,Guitar
Bob Gillette   Guitar
Harry Goldfield   Trumpet
Bill Harty   Drums
Bobby Holmes   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Clarence Hutchenrider   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone,Vocals
Mel Jenssen   Violin
Clifford King   Clarinet
Charlie LaVere   Piano
Min Leibrook   Bass Saxophone
Matty Malneck   Violin,Vibes
Fulton McGrath   Piano
John Nesbitt   Trumpet
Mike Pingatore   Banjo,Guitar
Art Ralston   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Billy Rauch   Trombone
Andy Secrest   Trumpet
Milton Senior   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Antonia Spaulding   Piano
Charles Strickfaden   Reeds,Bass Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Cedric Wallace   Bass
Ed Anderson   Trumpet
Johnny Carlson   Trumpet
Bobby Lee Jones   Trumpet
Charlie Alexander   Piano
Jim Johnston   String Bass
Sonny Dunham   Trumpet
Eddie Mallory   Trumpet
Grady Watts   Trumpet
Tiny Winters   String Bass
Boyce Cullen   Trombone
Lew Davis   Trombone
Larry Gordon   Alto Saxophone
Chester Hazlett   Clarinet,Reeds,Alto Saxophone
Harry Jacobson   Piano
Hal McDonald   Drums,Vibes
Nat Natoli   Trumpet
Bert Thomas   Guitar
Wilbur Hall   Guitar
Walter Johnson   Drums
Charlie Margulis   Trumpet
Vic Moore   Drums
Dick Voynow   Piano
Ray Lodwig   Trumpet
Herb Quigley   Drums
Jimmy Hartwell   Clarinet
Mike Trafficante   String Bass
Bob Wise   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone,Baritone Saxophone
Izzy Friedman   Clarinet
Harry Berly   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Irving Brodsky   Piano,Celeste,Vocals
Leo McConville   Trumpet
Bobby Stark   Trumpet
Fred Murray   Trumpet,Cornet,Soloist
Frank Billings   Drums
Anita Boyer   Vocals
Tom Gonsoulin   Trumpet
Lee Howell   Trombone
Fritz Hummel   Trombone
Bob Mayhew   Trumpet
Reginald Pursglove   Violin
Cornell Smelser   Piano-Accordion
Oliver Suderman   Trumpet
Henry Whiteman   Violin
Ellis Whiutlock   Trumpet
Max Goldberg   Trumpet
Mark Sheridan   Guitar
Walter Wright   Violin
Reg Pink   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Don Barrigo   Tenor Saxophone
Stewart Anderson   Reeds
Albert Washington   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Costi   Guitar
Jack Drummond   String Bass
John Bowman   Violin
George Harper   Tenor Saxophone
George W. Thomas   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Joe Galbreath   Banjo
Harry Bason   Piano
Maurice Bennett   Tenor Saxophone
Reggie Byleth   Reeds
Red Ginsler   Trombone
Tommy Howell   Trumpet
Bob Hutsell   Reeds
Joe Lendin   Reeds
George Marks   Piano
Mel Miller   Drums
Oscar Rossberg   Trombone
Byron Smart   Trumpet
Harold Stokes   Piano,Accordion,Piano-Accordion
Gene Woods   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Ray McDermott   Clarinet
Eddie Wolfe   Violin
Hitch's Happy Harmonists   Track Performer
Jimmy Rushing & Friends   Vocals
Fred Rollison   Cornet
Pierre Olker   String Bass
Irving Riskin   Piano
Alfie Noakes   Trumpet
Nick Galetta   Trumpet
Paul Richter   Drums
Perry Botkin and His Orchestra   Guitar
Lawrence "Bud" Freeman   Clarinet,Tenor Saxophone
Earl MacDowell   Drums
Andy Anderson   Trumpet
Warren Carr   Trombone
Fritz Ciccone   Guitar
Ray Conolly   Trumpet
Bernard Daly   Alto Saxophone
Charles Dowling   String Bass
Theodore McCord   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Fizz Goodrich   Baritone Saxophone
Kerval Chauncey Goodwin   Clarinet,Alto Saxophone
Bunny Bardach   Tenor Saxophone
Sonny Lee   Trombone
Harold Hood   Piano
Harry "Buzz" Wernert   Banjo,Guitar
Joe Galbraith   Banjo
Bill Moore Lucky Seven Band   Trumpet
Russell Smith Orchestra   Trumpet
Ray Noonan   Trombone
Andy Van Sickle   Drums
Harold Keating   Tenor Saxophone
Arnold Habbe   Banjo
Hannibal Matthews   Trombone
Eric Siday   Violin
Dick Dickerson   Reeds

Technical Credits

Rudy Vallée   Composer
J.J. Cale   Composer
Hoagy Carmichael   Composer,Director,Duet
Glen Gray   Director
John Kirby   Brass Band
Billy May   Arranger,Director
Eddie South   Director
Jack Jenney   Director
Irving Mills   Composer
Ray Noble   Arranger,Director
Frankie Trumbauer   Director
Don Redman   Director
Frank Loesser   Composer
Sidney Arodin   Composer
Perry Botkin   Director
Jack Brooks   Composer
Shelton Brooks   Composer
Bill Challis   Arranger
Duke Ellington   Director
Harry Goodman   Brass Band
Lavert Hutchinson   Brass Band
Johnny Mercer   Composer
Mitchell Parish   Composer
Cole Porter   Composer
Jo Trent   Composer
Byron Warner   Composer
Paul Francis Webster   Composer
Spencer Williams   Composer
Ralph Escudero   Brass Band
Stuart Gorrell   Composer
Joe Tarto   Brass Band
Dick Robertson   Duet
Gene Gifford   Arranger
Min Leibrook   Brass Band
Matty Malneck   Director
Arthur Sizemore   Composer
Dick Voynow   Composer
Clifford R. Burwell   Composer
George A. Little   Composer
Jacques Richmond   Composer
Harold George   Brass Band
Sunny Clapp   Composer
Pierre Olker   Brass Band
Perry Botkin and His Orchestra   Director
Charles A. Bayha   Composer
Fred B. Callahan   Composer

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