Glen Gray

Limehouse Blues

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In the mid-'30s, Glen Gray & the Casa Loma Orchestra were a popular, polite society band. They didn't fit in with the burgeoning harder swing bands of the time. This set, however, reveals the band taking a shot at some straight-ahead jazz material with surprisingly entertaining results, especially on "Chinatown My Chinatown," "Limehouse Blues," and Jelly Roll Morton's "Wolverine Blues." Even though this 2003 Collectables reissue is a bit skimpy at only 12 tracks, the quality of the performances makes it recommended to fans of both sweet bands and early swing.

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