Movies Books Music Food Tv Shows Technology Politics Video Games Parenting Fashion Green Living more >

Lunch » Tags » Untagged » Lady Who Swings Band

Lady Who Swings Band

1 rating: 5.0
A product

2008 release featuring the Jazz pianist with Andy Kirk and his band, the Clouds of Joy, was one of the most popular orchestras in the mid-'30s and '40s. A lot of the credit must be given to the work of Mary Lou Williams, who played piano, wrote most … see full wiki

1 review about Lady Who Swings Band

Some shining stars and a solid study in arranging

  • Aug 19, 2013
  • by
A lot of the music on this album will sound dated for two reasons: first the recording technology was relatively crude and second, the music is circa 1936-41. Yes, some of the recordings from that era are now anthems, but most of these never received the airplay those enjoyed and have fallen from memory.

What is important is this collection showcases Mary Lou Williams' genius for arranging as well as her virtuosity on piano. During the era of these recordings women musicians were not taken seriously by their male counterparts and were marginalized as composers and arrangers. Williams was an exception and the twenty five tracks on this album are evidence of that. In fact, she arranged all but two of the tracks: five and nine. However her piano is on every one.

Listen to the sound samples (if you are reading the CD version's review go to the MP3 version's product page for a full track listing and sound samples: The Lady Who Swings the Band (with Andy Kirk and His Clouds of Joy).

If you are a musician or are studying composition and arranging this album is a gold mine of examples because except for the noted tracks all came from the same pen. Therein lies an opportunity to detect patterns and Williams' own style. As a musician she was as highly regarded. In fact she was Thelonious Monk's mentor and also influenced Bud Powell.

The musicians on this album include some of Williams' peers who were photographed with her on Art Kane's iconic 1958 photograph titled A Great Day in Harlem (they were trumpeter Chu Berry and alto saxophonist and clarinetist Rudy Powell.) The rest of the ensemble on this album include: Shorty Baker and Harry Lawson on trumpet, Donnelly (tb), Don Byasand Dick Wilson on tenor sax, John Harrington on clarinet, Floyd Smith on guitar, Booker collins on bass and Ben Thigpen on drums. Vocals on this album are by Pha Terrell.

What did you think of this review?

Fun to Read
Post a Comment
What's your opinion on Lady Who Swings Band?
1 rating: +5.0
You have exceeded the maximum length.
Lady Who Swings Band
© 2015 Lunch.com, LLC All Rights Reserved
Lunch.com - Relevant reviews by real people.
This is you!
Ranked #
Last login
Member since