Johnny Wiggs

City of a Million Dreams

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This obscure LP features the fine Bix Beiderbecke-inspired cornet of Johnny Wiggs. Clarinetist Raymond Burke is also on all of the selections from the two-day period. The first couple tunes have Burke slipping a bit out of tune in spots and erratic recording quality, but things greatly improve by the third and fourth cuts. Record label owner Fat Cat McRee sings on "I'll Be a Friend With Pleasure" and "I Cried for You" without hurting anyone, and pianists Art Hodes, Claude Hopkins, and Bob Greene are subtle in support and in good form during their brief solos. Highlights of the spirited program include "Postman's Lament," "Oh! You Beautiful Doll," and "I Cried for You." Trad jazz fans will want to search for this worthwhile LP.

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