|Bill "Bojangles" Robinson||Actor|
At the Jazz Band Ball: Early Hot Jazz, Song and Dance available in DVD
At the Jazz Band Ball: Early Hot Jazz, Song, and Dance contains footage from 1925-1933 on this DVD from Yazoo Video. Includes performances by Duke Ellington, Louis Armstrong, Bessie Smith, and more. Image is in black-and-white with a full screen standard transfer. Audio is in Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo.
|Sound:||[Dolby Digital Surround]|
This is an excellent collection of 16 performances between 1925 and 1932. The sound and picture quality are surprisingly good, better than some jazz films I've seen from the 60s and 70s. Duke Ellington's band gets two tracks, though you can't hear his playing except for one short solo. His bandmembers are hilarious to watch in 'Old Man Blues.' Louis Armstrong also has 2 songs. You also see the Dorsey brothers, Paul Whiteman, Bessie Smith and others. Two of the tracks are of dancers, and they're a riot. This is vital if you're into early jazz.
Bix beiderbecke was an influential CORNET man, not clarinet as the info states...
How often have you begun watching a music documentary, only to have a commentator interrupt your enjoyment of the performance to explain to you what you were hearing? Just about every time, right? Not with this gem. You get the art, not the words. It's just one act after another. In fact, it wouldn't have hurt to insert an unobtrusive subtitle identifying some of the othwerwise anonymous acts. Most of us will recognize Louis Armstrong and Duke Ellington, and maybe even the Boswell Sisters. but who the heck was that hilarious fiddle orchestra? There's some rare footage here,and uninterrupted by vapid commentary. Some great music, and some unsurpassed dancing as well. If would like to experience a time gone by, here's your cbance