They continue to swing, which is very reassuring. And here is a combination platter of lovely music from the Fresno “Sounds of Mardi Gras” jazz festival, recorded on February 8, 2019. The generous creators are Bob Schulz, cornet, vocal; Kim Cusack, clarinet; Doug Finke, trombone; Ray Skjelbred, piano; Scott Anthony, banjo, vocal; Jim Maihack, tuba; Ray Templin, drums, vocal.
But wait! There’s more!
NEW ORLEANS SHUFFLE:
Walter Donaldson’s pretty MY BUDDY, sung by Scott:
The Horace Gerlach standard, SWING THAT MUSIC:
A blue suit and wedding bells for EMALINE:
For Irving Berlin and Bunny Berigan, MARIE:
For George and Gracie, also James P. and Max, LOVE NEST, sung by Ray:
The Hot Five’s ONCE IN A WHILE:
(WHEN IT’S) DARKNESS ON THE DELTA, sung by Scott:
And a closing statement of willingness-to-please, sung by Bob, I WOULD DO ANYTHING FOR YOU:
And they do.
I don’t think the other gentlemen of the ensemble will mind my suggestion that once the intent listeners have savored these videos, that they go back and listen closely to the impish and passionate Ray Skjelbred, whose sly adept subversions in solo and accompaniment are beyond remarkable. I seated myself where I did to video so that I could hear and see him with greater clarity, and his singular playing is singularly rewarding.
This set is in honor of my friend Judy Smith, who didn’t make it to the festival, but enjoys the musical bounces with great enthusiasm.
May your happiness increase!