Eddie Locke

Jivin' With the Refugees From Hastings Street

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This good-natured album of songs from the 1940s came about because drummer Eddie Locke was invited by producer Fred Miller to make a vocal album with anyone he chose, so he recruited fellow Detroit natives Tommy Flanagan, Major Holley, and Oliver Jackson. Unfortunately, the record is a bit of a disappointment for two major reasons: Locke isn't a particularly strong singer or interpreter, and Flanagan is relegated to a bland electric piano (his first recording on the instrument). As a result, humorous songs such as "Hit That Jive, Jack," "Straighten Up and Fly Right," and "The Frim Fram Sauce" fall a bit flat. Dan Morgenstern adds a police siren to "The Joint Is Jumpin'" (the one track with Flanagan on acoustic piano) and "Call the Police!" What might have been a terrific album dominated by jive songs ends up being one of the rare duds in the Chiaroscuro catalog, so it is unlikely that this out-of-print LP will be reissued on CD.