Joe Marsala

1936-1942

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All 21 of clarinetist Joe Marsala's early recordings as a leader are on this enjoyable CD. An excellent swing clarinetist who was flexible enough to play hot on Dixieland records, Marsala's six sessions reflect his versatile musical tastes. Among his more celebrated sidemen on these formerly rare selections are trumpeters Marty Marsala (his brother), Pee Wee Erwin, Bill Coleman, and Max Kaminsky, trombonist George Brunies, altoist Pete Brown, violinist Ray Biondi, drummers Buddy Rich and Shelly Manne (both making their recording debuts), and several fine rhythm sections. Marsala's wife, Adele Girard, the first great jazz harpist, is notably added on 11 of the numbers. Her hot harp playing on "Bull's Eye" and "I Know That You Know" steals the show. Highly recommended.

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