Daily Archives: October 23, 2011

“BOY, DO THEY ROCK!”: CARL SONNY LEYLAND, MARTY EGGERS, HAL SMITH (SWEET AND HOT, Sept. 5, 2011)

Here are two splashes of musical hot sauce.  My title comes from an overheard comment (accurate music criticism) from a happy audience member at the 2011 Sweet and Hot Music Festival in Los Angeles, California. 

And the objects of this praise?  None other than pianist (and gutty singer) Carl Sonny Leyland, string bass master Marty Eggers, and percussion wizard Hal Smith. 

How about a stomping version of James P. Johnson’s OLD-FASHIONED LOVE, which suggests that the amorous tempo was allegretto, not lento.  (So this is what Grandma and Grandpa were up to when we thought they were watching Art Linkletter!):

And something of a spiritual nature, with Brother Hal playing a melodic solo, echoing Zutty Singleton — OVER IN THE GLORYLAND:

Gloryland isn’t the half of it, I think.

“ROYAL GARDEN BLUES”: A GRAND FINALE: SWEET AND HOT 2011

Everyone on stage!

This ROYAL GARDEN BLUES, a hilarious jazz extravaganza, closed the festivites at the 2011 Sweet and Hot Music Festival.  You’ll have to navigate the solo order yourself, but the participants (more or less) include the guiding genius of festival, Wally Holmes.  Then you’ll encounter John Sheridan, piano; Allan Vache, Bob Draga, clarinet; Richard Simon, bass; Connie Jones, cornet, Jennifer Leitham, Nedra Wheeler, bass; Jim Galloway, reeds; Ed Polcer, Corey Gemme, Randy Reinhart, cornet; Tim Laughlin, Dan Levinson, reeds; Russ Phillips, John Allred, Dan Barrett, trombones; Mark Shane, Johnny Varro, piano; Howard Alden, guitar; Dick Shanahan, Frank DiVito, drums . . . and perhaps some unidentified flying swingers in the background as well. 

When the applause had died down, I heard a woman near me say happily, “Boy, that was fun!”  Absolutely right, ma’am.  I never thought I would want to spend Labor Day weekend in Los Angeles, but I’ve already (mentally) marked my 2012 calendar.  You come, too.