Percy Humphrey

Percy Humphrey & His Sympathy Five

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Percy Humphrey, the main trumpeter with the Preservation Hall Jazz Band during the 1960s, '70s and '80s, was never that strong a player. This CD starts off with Humphrey as the weak link in his own quintet on six previously unreleased numbers with clarinetist Raymond Burke, trombonist Jack Delaney, pianist Stanley Mendelson and drummer Paul Barbarin in 1954; Delaney often takes solo honors while Humphrey constantly falters. There are also four songs from a Barbarin date in which the drummer heads a septet including Humphrey, clarinetist Willie Humphrey, trombonist Waldron Joseph and guitarist Johnny St. Cyr in 1951, plus three delightful (and previously unknown) tunes from the obscure guitarist-vocalist Blind Gilbert in a trio that includes clarinetist Burke in 1953; "Let Me Call You Sweetheart" is a highlight. Overall this is an interesting historical set that is most highly recommended to New Orleans jazz collectors.

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