Various Artists

Hot & Rare

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This set of 'hot dance' music (orchestras mostly from the late 1920's playing jazz-influenced dance band arrangements) differs from the previous releases put out by the Diamond Cut label in that the selections are not taken from the Edison catalog but from the libraries of two record collectors. The 24 numbers feature a wide variety of groups (from 1926-30 with a number apiece from 1932 and 1935). Best-known of the bands are Ted Weems Orchestra (heard on a classic rendition of "What a Day"), Charlie Johnson's Paradise Ten ("You Ain't the One"), Jean Goldkette ("My Pretty Girl" by a band that includes Bix Beiderbecke and Joe Venuti) and the Carleton Coon-Joe Sanders Nighthawks ("Darktown Strutters Ball"). Although much of the music (as played by the Bluebirds, Blue Steele, the Wanderers, the High Hatters, Al Lentz, Roane's Pennsylvanians, Mal Hallett, Jacques Renard, Adrian Schubert, Harold Austin's New Yorkers, the Six Jumping Jacks, Earl Gresh's Gang Planks, Phil Baxter, and the Broadway Nitelites) is quite obscure, the performances are well-recorded and consistently enjoyable. There are lots of short solos, the obligatory vocals are mostly easy-to-take (Vaughan DeLeath is memorable on "I Wanna Be Loved by You") and the ensembles tend to be quite hot (as opposed to sweet). Many of the titles have not been available in a very long time (some not since the original 78 was released), so even though complete recording sessions are not reissued, this is a CD that 1920s collectors will want to go out of their way to obtain.

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