During four sessions in 1939 cornetist Muggsy Spanier performed definitive versions of 16 Dixieland standards that, due to the joy of the music and its huge influence on the future revival movement, would later be dubbed "The Great 16." This CD, which adds eight alternate takes, could have been subtitled "The Great 24." Spanier and his octet (which includes trombonist George Brunies, clarinetist Rod Cless, usually pianist Joe Bushkin, and several different tenors) roar their way through such songs as "Big Butter and Egg Man," "That Da Da Strain," "I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate," "Dinah," and "Mandy, Make up Your Mind." Classic music.
The Great 16! Review
by Scott Yanow