Various Artists

Jazz and Hot Dance in Thailand

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In the mid-'80s, the English label Harlequin released an extensive series of LPs documenting early jazz as played and recorded in different countries. There was virtually no jazz in Thailand but several prominent visitors were captured on film or on tape and appear on this album. Benny Goodman's Orchestra performed in Thailand in 1956 and is heard on a few conventional tracks (Budd Johnson on tenor is prominent); in addition the clarinetist sat in with some Thai musicians and singers. Trombonist Jack Teagarden's Dixieland sextet (which included trumpeter Max Kaminsky) plays "St. Louis Blues" in 1958 and there are selections from a 1966 concert by Lionel Hampton (with trumpeter Blue Mitchell) and a 1967 jam by a quartet led by violinist Sven Asmussen. The unique performances are interesting if not essential.