Sunday, November 29, 2015

A Handful Of Keys - And More

Fats Waller
According to info at the Red Hot Jazz website quoted here: "Fats Waller's big break occurred at a party given by George Gershwin in 1934, where he delighted the crowd with his piano playing and singing. An executive of Victor Records, who was at the party was so impressed that he arranged for Fats to record with the company. This arrangement would continue until Waller's death in 1943. Most of the records he made were released under the name of Fats Waller and his Rhythm. The group consisted of around half a dozen musicians who worked with him regularly, including Zutty Singleton. Throughout the 1930s and early 1940s Fats was a star of radio and nightclubs, and toured Europe. He unexpectedtly died on board a train near Kansas City, Missouri of pneumonia in 1943."

Fats Waller and His Rhythm (1938)
About Fats Waller and His Rhythm the following is also quoted from the Red Hot Jazz website:
"Between 1934 and 1942 the group recorded about 400 sides, well over half of Waller's lifetime recorded output. Material ranged from downright lamentable to outstanding and Waller's treatment of it ranged from brusque to brilliant. (-) The "Rhythm" was primarily a studio band, and recording dates had to be worked into the musicians' different schedules. Waller's genius carried the band, enabling them to record as many as ten sides in a single day, often consisting mainly of new material. Rarely did band members know in advance which tunes they would be recording! It is a testament to the collective musical talent of the group that they managed so well without rehearsal. This chaotic approach succeeded in part because of consistency in core personnel which included Waller, Autrey, Sedric and Casey. The chaos no doubt contributed to the spontaneity which characterizes many of the Rhythm's recordings." (Mike Donovan at Red Hot Jazz, here )

Paul Asaro at the piano
Paul Asaro is one of a chosen few contemporary piano players who has continued the stride piano style of Fats Waller convincingly, here's an example

In 2012, Rivermont Records released a CD featuring Paul Asaro that revitalizes the music originally recorded by Fats Waller and His Rhythm

CD front: Rivermont BSW-2222, CD (2012)
Paul Asaro is accompanied by members of the Chicago based jazz ensmeble The Fat Babies - Andy Schumm (co), John Otto (cl,ts), Jake Sanders (g), Beau Sample (sb) and Alex Hall (dms), and the repertoire of the disc features both popular and lesser known tunes from the Fats Waller and His Rhythm's recorded output. There are forteen tracks at the CD, a tracklist is available here 

The Fat Babies with Paul Asaro on piano (press photo)
The music at the disc is excellently performed by Paul Asaro and The Fat Babies, audio quality is top notch recreating the atmosphere of the Victor studio recordings by Fats waller and His Rhythm. I highly recommend the CD as a successful attempt to relive some of Fats Waller's recorded legacy convincingly without spoiling the original source. These cats know their stuff and carry on a heavy heritage. - Below is inserted some examples of live performance of some of the tunes presented at the CD. Here's Paul Asaro and The Fat Babies from a live performance earlier this year performing Blue Turning Grey Over You 

From a live performance last year, here is Paul Asaro and The Fat Babies playing the lesser known I'll Dance At Your Wedding 

To end this, from a live performance earlier this year Belive It, Beloved - My, My, My! Now here 'tis; Latch On!


Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Savoy Ballroom Swing - Chick Webb And His Orchestra

The Swing Era of the 1930s emerged with the rise of big bands in the USA. Harlem in NYC had opened the Savoy Ballroom late 1920s, it was the hot spot of the city for dancers to meet and have a great time, both coloured and white people were allowed to attend and dance to music by popular swing orchestras.
Dancing couple at the Savoy Ballroom
Harlem and the Savoy attracted dancers and an audience eager to find amusement, the house orchestra of the Savoy accordingly encouraged the public to Go Harlem

This great swing music was of course played by Chick Webb and his orchestra, Go Harlem was recorded June 2nd 1936 
Chick Webb at the drums
Chick Webb had come to NYC in 1925, he led bands in various clubs before settling in for long regular runs at the Savoy beginning in 1931.
Chick Webb and his Savoy orchestra recorded the original version of Stompin' at the Savoy on May 18 1934, a swing tune composed and arranged by Edgar Sampson and since then a standard recorded by numerous other jazz artists

Chick Webb's big band was characterized by a crisp ensemble sound and the leader's disciplined, ferociously driving drum pyrotechnics and further a series of strong compositions and charts by Edgar Sampson. Although the orchestra did not become as influential and revered in the long run as some of its contemporaries, it nevertheless was feared in its time for its battles of the bands at the Savoy Ballroom. A famous encounter with the Benny Goodman orchestra at its peak (with Gene Krupa in the drummer's chair) left the latter band drained and defeated.
Benny Goodman's signature tune at the time was Don't Be That Way (- you can listen to a recorded version by the BG orchestra with arrangement by Edgar Sampson at YouTube, here), however, here's the version by Chick Webb and his orchestra -  Webb's orchestra introduced the Edgar Sampson arrangement with this version from November 1934

The Savoy often featured Battle of the Bands where Webb's orchestra would compete with other top bands from opposing bandstands. By the end of the night's battles the dancers seemed always to have voted Chick's band as the best. As a result, Webb was deemed the most worthy recipient to be crowned the first King of Swing. 
Although a judge declared Webb's band the official winner in 1938 over Count Basie's, and Basie himself said he was just relieved to come away from the contest without embarrassing himself, surviving musicians continued to dispute the ruling for decades to follow.
Chick Webb and his orchestra
Chick Webb became one of the most competitive drummers and bandleaders of the big band era, his playing technique at the drumset later inspired Buddy Rich and  Louie Bellson. Below I'll insert a couple of examples featuring great work at the drumset by Chick Webb. - Here is the Chick Webb orchestra's recording of Clap Hands, Here Comes Charley from March 23 1937

Next follows Chick Webb and his orchestra with their version of Liza, recorded May 1938; the drum solo introducing the well known standard is said to be the leader's "answer" to Gene Krupa's contributions to the Benny Goodman orchestra's famous version of Sing, Sing, Sing 

In 1935, Chick Webb hired the teenaged Ella Fitzgerald after she won a talent contest, he became her legal guardian and rebuilt his show around the singer.
In 1938, Chick Webb's orchestra featuring Ella Fitzgerald as solo vocalist had a big hit with the tune A Tisket-A-Tasket, and this was followed by another hit in 1939 with a recording of Undecided 

Sadly, Chick Webb died from spinal tuberculosis on June 16, 1939. After his death, Ella Fitzgerald led the Chick Webb band until she left to focus on her solo career in 1942 and caused the band to disband.
Chick Webb and his orchestra's contributions to great big band jazz of the Swing Era will remain, although his band did not become as influential and revered in the long run as some of its contemporaries. Nevertheless, the inserted audio examples above are proof that Chick Webb's band provided us with excellent swing of lasting quality, I think.

Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Violinist Eddie South (1904 – 1962) - A Striking Musician, Part Two

Georg Lankester continues his survey of the career of violinist Eddie South. Below follows the second part of the article Violinist Eddie South (1904 – 1962)   -   A Striking Musician, Part Two. The first part of the article is accessible here  

Eddie South
Eddie’s Recordings In France

The first appearance of the violinist was planned in the Club des Oiseaux in the Pavillion d’Elegance. Hot Club’s president, Hugues Panassié hurried to see South performing and on the initiative of secretary Charles Delaunay it was immediately after the concert decided to make recordings with Django in the studio.
Swing, SW 8 A - Eddie's Blues
His Masters’Voice (France) gladly accepted their request, and was prepared to record several titles of the violinist and Django Reinhardt, sometimes with a guest player. On 29 September 1937 two titles were recorded: Eddie’s Blues (by both artists) and Sweet Georgia Brown with Wilson Meyers added on bass.
Wilson Meyers
Moreover a recording of Lady be Good was made of three violinists: South, Grappelli and Michel Warlop, accompanied by Django, Chaput and Myers.
Michel Warlop
It is highly interesting to listen to these records. Here are two continents united viz. an American jazzman and a Belgian gypsy guitarist who created a new European swing style.

These records prove Eddie’s excellent violin playing, calm and inventive, backed by a unique rhythm, never monotone but full of variations and nicely swinging. Because of the guitar accompaniment the blues theme came forward even better. The recordings belong to the most beautiful that Eddie had made so far. His playing was so inspired that the Hot Club managers got the impression that he was somewhat envious of Grappelli’s position in the quintet.

He preferred the slow themes in which he could express his beautiful tone and could display trills. Eddie did not like so much fast runs although he certainly had these under control.

As mentioned earlier a record of the three best violinists of those days was made titled Lady be good in an arrangement by Django. One can listen to Eddie, Stéphane and Michel accompanied on two guitars and bass. After a typical Django solo each violin player gets its turn: Warlop a bit nervous, Grappelli as usual fully in control and South with several blues chords. The final chorus shows all violinists together with an arranged break.

Delaunay now came up with the idea to combine jazz improvisations with J.S. Bach’s music, played on violin. Though Eddie thought that this was a ridiculous suggestion those recordings were indeed made since Grappelli was interested because of the money it would generate.

For Django this was something fully unknown, but they let him listen to recordings of Yehudi Menuhin. On basis of those he prepared the way how to accompany. The guitarist admired Bach’s harmonies!
Swing, SW 18 A
Under the supervision of Charles Delaunay – the founder of the Swing label -  these recordings were made on the same day. It was a good initiative because these records are of historical value and illustrate the level of the musicians.

For the Swing label Delaunay also recorded duets of South and Grappelli with accompaniment, titles: Dinah and Daphne.
Swing, SW 12 B Daphne
It is fascinating to hear the different styles of these two artists and the beautiful alternating solos of Reinhardt.

SW 31 A Somebody Loves Me
On 23 November 1937 La voix de son Maître recorded two tracks of Eddie, Django and Paul Cordonnier (bass), “Somebody loves me” and “I can’t believe that you’re in love with me”, two romantic ballads.

And, of course, Hot Club fans enjoy the interpretation of Bach’s ‘minor concert’ performed by South, Grappelli and Reinhardt on the same date, followed by the improvised version of it (which included a guitar introduction). Finally the nice theme Fiddle Blues was played in an up-tempo. 

Brunswick flyer
In 1938 Eddie stayed some time in Holland where he made a few records for Brunswick. It would be the end of his European visits.

Back Home

Then he left Europa and made the voyage to his native country together with Benny Carter. During the Forties he played in several clubs among which Kelly’s Stables, had his own group and toured around with bass player Billy Taylor (known from the recordings with Rex Stewart and Django in Paris in ’39). He further worked with studio formations in Los Angeles and New York for MGM and other companies. Because of his popularity he also had his own radio program. In the Fifties Eddie also could be seen on television presented by well-known persons such as Herb Lyons and Dave Garroway.

Despite a declining health he kept playing. However, on 25 April 1962 he died in Chicago, far too early. Although, being a great violinist, he never got the reputation of Stuff Smith and Stephane Grappelli.

Some Features

Eddie South is in fact the most sophisticated violinist we have known. His first appaeranc as a classical musician most likely has been the reason to create such a subtle swing. He played in a very melodious way and produced pure and often soft notes.

He was fascinated by gypsy music and although many critics assert that he could not make this style his own, several recordings prove to the contrary. But some blues elements are certainly also noticable in his performances. Anyhow Eddie South surely has been a significant jazz violinist

Recommended recordings: Two guitars (1929), Eddie’s Blues (1937), Sweet Georgia Brown (1937),  Stompin’ at the Savoy (1941), Fiddle Ditty (1956).  

Georg Lankester

Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Friday, October 23, 2015

Violinist Eddie South (1904 – 1962) - A Striking Musician, Part One

Georg Lankester writes a survey of the career of violinist Eddie South. Below follows the first part of the article, the second part will be published later. 

Eddie South (1904-1962)

In my stories on jazz musicians who played with guitarist Django Reinhardt, this time the  focus on the great American violinist, composer and arranger Eddie South.

We have to go back to the USA where Edward was born in Louisiana on 24 November 1904.Growing up he proved to be highly talented, since he was able to play the violin rather well at an early stage.

Like many others from the South, his parents went to Chicago when he was still young. And the prodigy (that’s what he was) was soon registered at the Chicago Music College in order to follow a classical music study. Unfortunately he had to finish it after one year, because of his skin color. There was no place for a black person, independent how well you could play. Realizing this Eddie switched to the jazz scene which was fully under development then.

A New Direction

Darnell Howard
He meets clarinetist Darnell Howard who teaches him the principles of jazz playing and also Charles Elgar. With both musicians he starts to perform.

He then gets work by joining the well-known orchestra of Erskine Tate, as well as the band of Mac Brady. Somewhat later he becomes the leader of the Syncopators with trumpet player Jimmy Wade. He joins this orchestra which plays in the popular Moulin Rouge Café from 1923-1927. It is with this band that he made his very first recordings for the Paramount label (in 1923). 

Based on his experiences and full of enthusiasm he now forms a small group without brass players, not very common then, and he calls them The Alabamians. The line-up is violin, piano, clarinet, guitar and drums.

Eddie South and his Alabamians
The next year he also works with Erskine Tate and joins the quartet of guitarist Mike Mckendrick as well.
Mike McKendrick
After some recordings for Victor with his own formation Eddie leaves for Europe where he will stay from 1928 till 1931. Like many other Americans he makes a tour through the UK and visits France frequently where Paris is becoming the city of the European Jazz (due to the Hot Club de France initiatives).

South, however, always keeps his interest in classical music and during his European stay he registers at the Conservatory of Paris to practice violin. His teacher there is Firmin Touche. But he also frequently visits Russian cabarets where famous Roma musicians play such as Jean Goulesco. Eddie is highly fascinated by gypsy Music.

In the autumn of 1929 he travels to Hungary to follow a study at the Music Academy of Budapest, one of the leading colleges for violin. One of his teachers is Prof. Hubay – a friend of Franz Liszt – who is also strongly influenced by Hungarian gypsies.

In the Roma composition Two Guitars which Eddie recorded in Paris (1929) for HMV one can hear him switching to the gypsy style, sometimes showing blues influences as well.

Meeting Django in the South of France

A young Django Reinhardt
In the spring of 1931 Eddie can be found in the French ‘Riviera’ where he performs in Cannes in the popular Bianco’s Night Club.  And it is there that he meets Django Reinhardt who travels around with his wife Naguine in order to earn some money. This contact was organized through the intermediary of bass player and band leader Louis Vola.

Somewhat earlier the guitarist and his brother Joseph had, for the first time in their life, heard American jazz records after they had met painter Emile Savitry. Both brothers were excited when they listened to Louis Armstrong, Joe Venuti and Eddie Lang.

Django was quite impressed by Eddie South’s violin playing which included both blues and gypsy elements. Maybe this experience was the basis for the long association between guitar and violin shown in the Hot Club Music in the years to come.

In Cannes they were performing several times together. But also Eddie was surprised to discover Django’s feeling for improvisation and his fabulous rhythm, so they enjoyed playing together.

After a few months Eddie South went back to the States and restarted his performances in Chicago with his Alabamians. Those years he also accompanied various American singers. But in 1937 he travelled again to his beloved France. Paris was full of musical events and had become a real European center for jazz, stimulated by the World Exhibition which was visited by 34 millions of people. Eddie was there officially invited by the Hot Club de France and….soon he would meet Django again.

Georg Lankester

Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Josephine Baker In Holland, December 1933

When Hans Koert, Theo v.d. Graaff and I presented the El Redescubrimiento de Oscar Alemán/The Rediscovery of Oscar Alemán project at the IAJRC Convention in Copenhagen July 2005, Hans Koert had prepared a review of the career of Oscar Alemán based on the info available at the time. The review benefited from Hans Koert's own research as well as the documentary Vida con Swing (2002) by Hernán Gaffet. During this first-time presentation of Alemán's career for an international audience, Hans Koert also had collected a couple of surprises to wet the teeth of hungry collectors of Alemán's recorded legacy. The review was accompanied by audio examples and a Power Point presentation to illustrate Alemán's career. One of the audio examples was a just recently discovered private recording of Josephine Baker made at a performance during her tour of Holland in December 1933.
In the article Oscar Alemán in Copenhagen (2005), Hans Koert accounts for the background of the recording, quoted here:

"Being part of the Baker Boys meant a lot of travelling around Europe and Northern Africa with the revue of Josephine Baker. These tours were tiresome; Oscar loved to be in Paris, where he could play with visiting jazz musicians, like Freddy Taylor, Danny Polo, Bill Coleman and Frank “Big Boy” Goudy. The Baker tours were a tough job, indeed; two concerts in the evening and sometimes one in the afternoon, too. In December 1933 the Baker company played in Holland, eleven concerts within six days (Concertgebouw - Amsterdam, Concertzaal - Haarlem, Kunstmin - Dordrecht, Musis Sacrum - Arnhem, De Groote Doelenzaal - Rotterdam and Gebouw voor K en W – The Hague.). However, the tour through Holland was cancelled in The Hague due to technical problems after the first evening concert, although other sources speak about Josephine Baker being ill. It is a fact that the critics characterized Josephine’s act as “weinig om het lijf hebbend”, which means in English that the audience considered her erotic acts to be of minor importance."  (Hans Koert in: OSCAR ALEMAN in Copenhagen, p. 2 (2005))
I have not been able to confirm, if the recording was made at Kunstmin in Dordrecht, but the exact date of the recording is stated on the label shown above as 19 December 1933. The audio quality is not the best, however, this is nonetheless an interesting recording, as this is probably the only preserved live-recording of Josephine Baker with her 16 Baker Boys featuring Oscar Alemán on guitar in the ensemble. The guitar is barely audible, but you can hear it behind Md. Baker's vocal throughout, if you pay attention to the accompanying music of the song. The audio has now been uploaded at YouTube and is inserted here to honor the magnificent work by Hans Koert to initiate The Rediscovery of Oscar Alemán in this part of the world, and of course further to remind us that today 35 years have passed since Oscar Alemán left us on October 14th, 1980.


Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Autumn - 'Tis Autumn

Original sheet music
A jazz standard with reference to the present season is of course Autumn Leaves, but here I like to focus on another which may not be as well known as Joseph Kosma's tune, originally titled Les feuilles mortes in French.

The shown 'Tis Autumn was composed by Henry Nemo in 1941, and he also wrote the lyrics for the song. Henry Nemo (1909 – 1999) was a musician, songwriter and film actor, his songwriting comprised a collaboration with Irving Mills and John Redmond for the lyrics of I Let A Song Go Out Of My Heart with music by Duke Ellington. Nemo himself composed the standards Don't Take Your Love From Me and the mentioned 'Tis Autumn.

Woody Herman and his orchestra
Woody Herman and his orchestra was one of the first popular jazz ensembles to record a version of 'Tis Autumn. Woody Herman recorded the tune on 13 November 1941 for Decca featuring his orchestra and vocals by the leader himself, Carolyn Grey and ensemble. This version has been uploaded at YouTube and is inserted here.

The Nat King Cole Trio had a hit with 'Tis Autumn in 1949, you can find it at YouTube by clicking here.  Below I'll concentrate on some instrumental versions of the tune. - Here is Red Garland's version of the tune recorded 27 November 1958 and issued on the Prestige LP All Kinds of Weather featuring Red Garland (p) Paul Chambers (b) Art Taylor (dms)

Another instrumental version of 'Tis Autumn is the following by Stan Getz, recorded 1952

The Chet Baker Septet also recorded an instrumental version of 'Tis Autum 19 January 1959, released on the Riverside LP titled Chet. The septet comprise: Chet Baker (trumpet), Herbie Mann (flute), Pepper Adams (baritone sax), Bill Evans (piano), Kenny Burrell (guitar), Paul Chambers (bass), Philly Joe Jones (drums) 

'Tis Autumn is also the main title of a documentary by filmmaker Raymond De Felitta, who released 'Tis Autumn: The Search for Jackie Paris' in 2007 - a filmed protrait of the jazz singer Jackie Paris.
Original film poster
The Rotten Tomatoes website has this info about the film:
"In the 1950s and '60s, Jackie Paris was one of the most celebrated jazz vocalists of his generation; he collaborated with such giants as Charlie Parker, Charles Mingus, and Dizzy Gillespie, he was a favorite of leading music critics, and recorded for such top jazz labels as Impulse and East-West. But ten years on, Paris had fallen so far off the radar that a major jazz reference work reported that Paris had died in 1977, even though he was still around and occasionally performing at the time. In the 1990s, filmmaker Raymond De Felitta heard some of Paris' recordings and became an instant fan, and was deeply curious about Paris' life and career, and how an artist with such gifts had become little more than a footnote in music history. De Felitta's search eventually led him to Paris himself, and a fascinating story of bad luck, a wildly dysfunctional family, dangerous pride, a hair-trigger temper, and a remarkable voice that somehow survived it all, even if his career did not. 'Tis Autumn: The Search for Jackie Paris is a documentary which chronicles De Felitta's search for the elusive singer."
Jackie Paris
The documentary was well received by the critics and the public, as the theme of the story transcends the individual fate of the protagonist:
"‘Tis Autumn – The Search For Jackie Paris is not just a documentary about a great but unheralded jazz singer. It’s a film that explores the very nature of what it is to live the life of an artist–any artist. Filmmaker Raymond De Felitta examines the life of cult favorite jazz singer Jackie Paris, but at the same time he might as well be exploring the life of any artist in any discipline, too many of whom share the same fate that Paris did; the explosive debut followed by the years of ups and downs, the constant hope that success, though out of reach, is around the corner, the private tragedies that grow out of artistic frustration, and the final, self-inflicted wounds which all too often cause the once promising to descend into bitterness and chaos, a prelude to vanishing completely." (qouted from this source).

To end this, here is Jackie Paris in his last public performance in 2004 singing 'Tis Autumn from the documentary by Raymond De Felitta


Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

The Recording Debut of Les Loups

Original ad illustration by VICTOR TALKING COMPANY (courtesy by Erik Host)
From the online discography of Oscar Alemán we only have an approximate date of the recording debut of Les Loups. The info stated in the online discography gives c. December 10th, 1927 as the date of the recording of the tango-milonga 'Hawayanita' and the waltz 'Criollita' by Les Loups, the recording debut by the duo for Victor, issued on Victor 79968.
Victor 79968-A
Another source, the online Discography of American Historic Recordings, states the recording date of Victor 79968 as 'Winter 1928' for the catalog numbers of the mentioned tunes, BAVE-1588 and BAVE-1589.
AHR Discography detail (click to enlarge)
Further info in the online AHR discograpy states that take 2 of both matrix number BAVE-1588 and BAVE-1589 were used as masters for the issued Victor 79968 disc - here is the info for BAVE-1588 inserted below
AHR Discography detail (click to enlarge)
Last week I had a mail from Anthony Baldwin, who now can confirm the precise date of the recoding debut of Les Loups as December 6th 1927 and further has some interesting info that I like to share here. I quote Mr. Baldwin below by permission, the inserted scans are also forwarded by this observant collector.
HMV R14030 (scan courtesy by Anthony Baldwin)
Anthony Baldwin writes: "I recently acquired HMV R14030, the Italian issue of Argentine Victor 79968: Hawayanita (BA1588) and Criollita (BA1589). Under the label of the Hawayanita side there is legible information scratched in the original wax by the engineer, notably the matrix number "BAVE 1588" and a precise recording date "Dec. 6..27".
Copy of original wax info at HMV R14030 - Hawayanita (courtesy by Anthony Baldwin)
"The "Hawayanita" side has legible matrix information scratched in the wax under the label, clearly dating the session to "Dec. 6. 27", whereas the date on the Oscar blog is "c. 10 December 1927". There is also a hand-inscribed "2" at 9 o'clock from the spindle hole, which would appear to confirm the die-stamped take number "2" in the wax run-off area. The flip side, "Criolitta", also bears the take number "2" in the run-off."

"In my view, c. 10 December 1927 was always a slightly dubious estimate, mainly because the 10th was a Saturday, a day when — in western culture, at least — musicians are usually busy working elsewhere. For similar reasons, the probably American engineer at Argentine Victor would have been used to the U.S. practice of working Monday to Friday: Saturday was for the racetrack or the golf course. Unless someone like Rachmaninov had been in town, I doubt that the engineer would have been amused to be dragged into the studio at the weekend — and certainly not for a couple of obscure guitarists!"

"It's interesting that the artist credit scratched in the wax is not to "Les Loups", but to Lobo-Morera [sic], presumably because Oscar was using his father's name, Moreira."

My comment regarding the last mentioned is that published sheet music from the period often credited Alemán by writing 'Oscar M. Alemán' - the 'M' could refer to his father's name, however, Oscar's middle name was another possibility. His full name actually read 'Oscar Marcelo Alemán'.
Sheet music frontpage - Hawayanita
Mr. Baldwin adds another interesting detail regarding the Victor session on Dec. 6th, 1927:
"Interestingly, the two matrix numbers immediately preceding the "Hawayanita" session, BAVE 1586 ("Caxorro") and 1587 ("Ya...Ya"), are by the Elio Rietti Jazz Band, apparently also recorded on Dec. 6, 1927. These sides are also both take-2. One wonders whether there was any connection between the Rietti band and Les Loups, or whether they were simply booked into the studio on the same day."

If someone can supply enlightening information of a possible connection between Les Loups and the Elio Rietti Jazz Band - a very popular and pioneering jazz band in Argentina in the 1920s, I should like to learn more. Contact me by using the e-mail below. Or use the comment facility of the blog.

Thanks a lot to Mr. Anthony Baldwin for his very informative observations!

Retrospect Keep Swinging (old) Oscar Aleman Choro Music Flexible Records Hit of the Week-Durium Friends of the Keep Swinging blog Keep Swinging Contributions