Bob Crosby & His Orchestra

South Pacific Blows Warm

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This little-known LP holds one's interest. Bob Crosby lent his name to the project although he does not have a single vocal. Four of the sidemen from his Bobcats (trumpeters Yank Lawson and Billy Butterfield, baritonist Dean Kincaid, and bassist Bob Haggart) are joined by trombonists Cutty Cutshall and Lou McGarity, either Bud Freeman or Al Klink on tenor, and clarinetist Peanuts Hucko, plus a solid rhythm section. The Dixielandish band performs nine numbers from South Pacific, turning the show tunes into hot jazz. These are certainly some of the most swinging versions of "There Is Nothin' Like a Dame," "Happy Talk," and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Outa My Hair" that have ever been recorded. The only real reservation is the brevity of the performances, which total to be under 28 minutes. But chances are good that this obscure music will never be reissued on CD (along with most of the material recorded by the Dot label), so pick this near-gem up when you can.

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