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July 31, 2006

Joe Turner's Boss of the Blues

Posted by dogpossum on July 31, 2006 8:35 PM in the category digging and djing and music

There's a reason they call these doods shouters.

The second of my amazingly quick-to-arrive CDs from Caiman (less than 2 weeks from Europe), I'm sucking up Big Joe Turner's Boss of the Blues.

The super-jazz-nerds amongst you are no doubt thrilling to the thought of Freddie Greene playing on this 1956 recording. The rest of you should just settle in and enjoy... take care to get a firm grip on the sofa, lest Turner blows you away.

I've not had that much experience with Joe Turner. I have bunches of his stuff with people like Basie, and I'm pretty fond of most of it, but this is the first proper Big Joe Turner album I've bought. I like it. It's uncompromising. I like those shouters - I love Dinah Washington especially. I like the thought that most of them started singing in church, and all that shouting is about Jesus. But Jesus dancing with his skirt up round his hips, on a table, dancing the crazy-I'm-dancing!-I'm-dancing!-like-a-fool type of dancing.

There's lots on this album for DJing, from saucy blues to jumpy lindy, but our favourites in this house are the boogie woogie bits - that version of Roll 'em Pete makes you want to run around like a fool*. Sometimes the quality is kind of fagged** by Turner's volume. But that's kind of cool. Like feedback on a Nirvana album in 1992.

*funnily enough, I was just listening to my 'lindy music' on shuffle and came across another version of that song that I really, really like and wish I had more opportunities to play for dancers (from Basie's Breakfast Dance and BBQ). It clocks in at 230bpm, so it's kind of not all that playable most of the time. It starts: "Well I got a gal, she lives up on the hill" and continues...

**using this term the way my dad would - meaning 'tired' or totally buggered from overwork.

Posted by dogpossum on July 31, 2006 8:35 PM in the category digging and djing and music