Clarinetist Tony Parenti, who also handled alto and baritone saxophones, cut about two-dozen sides as a leader during the 1920s, and virtually all of them were reissued on one CD by the Frog label in 1998. Every title except the last was made in his hometown of New Orleans, LA. Beginning in January 1925, the group recorded for Okeh and Victor as Anthony Parenti & His Famous Melody Boys. In September of that year, and again in April of 1926, Parenti's Liberty Syncopators waxed nine sides for Columbia; "Strut Yo' Stuff" and "I Need Some Lovin'" were released under the name of the La Veeda Dance Orchestra. There's also a "La Vida Medley" (named for the old La Vida Ballroom at Royal and Canal Streets) that combines "Ida" and a "Gypsy Love Song." In 1928, the band recorded as Tony Parenti's New Orleanians; that name would be revived 19 years later when Parenti achieved some success as a Dixie revivalist. "Old Man Rhythm" was recorded in 1929 in New York, where Parenti would record with B.A. Rolfe, Paul Ash, Ted Lewis, Eddie Condon, Muggsy Spanier, George Brunies, and Miff Mole. Horn players heard on this superb collection are cornetists Henry Knecht, Albert Brunies, Leon Prima, and John Hyman (also known as Johnny Wiggs); trombonist Charles Hartman and saxophonists Tony Papalia and Hal Jordy. Mention should also be made of pianists Vic Lubowski (who really shines on "Cabaret Echoes") Buzzy Williams, and Vic Breidis, who engages in a zippy duet with Parenti on "Old Man Rhythm." Vocal passages are credited to guitarist Jack Brian and drummer Monk Hazel. This richly rewarding stash of old-time New Orleans jazz will work nicely as a prelude to Parenti's 1949 blowing session with Jimmy Archey and Wild Bill Davison, which was reissued on compact disc by Jazzology in 1994.
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