Art Landry

Art Landry & His Orchestra

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Taking into account the strong influence of African-American jazz upon his work during the 1920s, it is unfortunate that Art Landry has been posthumously eclipsed by Paul Whiteman and a handful of other more widely publicized, commercially successful bandleaders. Given Landry's near-absence from the digital reissue marketplace, Swing Time's sampler of his Victor recordings from 1924-1926 should be regarded as a stash of inestimable importance. Waxed in Oakland, California, Camden, New Jersey, and New York, New York, these are predominately hot jazz sides peppered with the occasional pop vocal. Landry's hit recording of "Sleepy Time Gal" features sweet vocalist Henry Burr, whose given name was Harry H. McClaskey. "It'll Get You" features some really fine trumpeting by either Jimmy Greco or Skid Owens, or both. Trombones were handled by Boyce Cullen and Al Marineau, who also sang. Additional vocals are attributed to pianist Red Thomas, as well as sax and flute man Dinty Curtis, who shared the reed section with Carl Gauper and Horace "Zip" Keyes. Landry himself played clarinet, violin, and alto sax. His fiddle is featured on "Swamp Blues." Landry's Gennett recordings were made in 1923 and primarily released under the billing of his Call of the North Orchestra. As the Gennetts have yet to be reissued in a comprehensive set, the Victor recordings presented here stand as the definitive monument to this unjustly neglected artist.

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