Cootie Williams & His Orchestra

1946-1949

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AllMusic Review by

Classics picks up the story of former Ellington trumpeter Cootie Williams as the leader of his own orchestra from 1946 through 1949 on sides he recorded for Capitol, Majestic, and Mercury. Vocalists Bob Merrill, Billy Matthews, and Eddie Mack are heavily featured on these 22 cuts. The R&B jump music of Louis Jordan and Wynonie Harris were big draws in the nightclubs and jukeboxes of the time and much of this material lends itself to that style. "Inflation Blues" is a takeoff of the "Let the Good Times Roll" theme, while "Save the Bones for Henry Jones," "I Should O' Been Thinking Instead of Drinkin," "Gator Tail" (parts one and two), and "Doin' the Gator Tail" are enjoyable mixtures of novelty lyrics and stompin' R&B instrumentals. While Williams favored this commercial recipe during these years, he did manage to wax a few ballads, such as "I Can't Get Started" and "I Want to Be Loved," and orchestra numbers like "Rhapsody in Bass"; "Sound Track" leans toward the Ellingtonesque style he was an earlier participant in.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1
2:42
2 3:09
3 2:49
4 3:11
5
2:46
6 3:07
7 2:53
8 3:17
9 2:54
10 3:03
11 2:44
12 2:54
13 2:43
14 3:21
15 3:11
16 3:08
17 2:48
18 2:58
19 3:35
20
2:14
21 2:48
22 2:24
blue highlight denotes track pick