Various Artists

New Orleans Senior Prom

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You can imagine the scene: A couple of record collectors are browsing the racks when one stumbles on a copy of New Orleans Senior Prom and says to the other "Wow, if they'd played music like this at my high-school prom, maybe I would have gone!" But let's face it: These are record collectors -- there's not a chance in Hell they're going to prom, even if the Beatles are the musical entertainment. The irony, of course, is that New Orleans Senior Prom is filled with vintage Crescent City R&B so obscure that only record collectors are going to seek it out in the first place: This is raw, wild stuff, perfectly emblematic of the New Orleans sound during its late 1950s and early 1960s heyday. Like much of Night Train's output, the fidelity isn't great, with some cuts sounding like they were mastered directly from vinyl, but the scarcity of material and its overall quality makes it worth picking up nevertheless. Highlights include the Scotchtones' "Sake Wa Dookie," Chuck Como's "Bells in My Heart" and Allen Colay's "Last Dance."

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