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Ozzie Nelson AHO: An Underrated Band?

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  • Dutch
    I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940 yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one of the more
    Message 1 of 6 , Jun 21, 2011
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      I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940 yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one of the more underrated bands of the 1930s.

      Some of the band's songs are absolutely first-rate musically, and even Ozzie's vocals, while not the greatest, are at least competent. Harriet Hilliard and Rose Ann Stevens turned in some fine vocals as well.

      Does anyone agree, or is it just me?

      Who would you nominate as the most underrated band of the 1930s?

      Best,
      Dutch 1910
    • Martin J
      Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I d nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I m pretty sure if this organization had recorded
      Message 2 of 6 , Jun 21, 2011
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        Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I'd nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I'm pretty sure if this organization had recorded and toured in the U.S. the name and the music would have been recognized by critics, both contemporary and modern, as one of the most swinging, jazz-oriented groups of the mid-30's.


        --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Dutch" <dutch1910@...> wrote:
        >
        > I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940 yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one of the more underrated bands of the 1930s.
        >
        > Some of the band's songs are absolutely first-rate musically, and even Ozzie's vocals, while not the greatest, are at least competent. Harriet Hilliard and Rose Ann Stevens turned in some fine vocals as well.
        >
        > Does anyone agree, or is it just me?
        >
        > Who would you nominate as the most underrated band of the 1930s?
        >
        > Best,
        > Dutch 1910
        >
      • David Weiner
        Jan Savitt. Dave W. ... From: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com [mailto:RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com] On Behalf Of Martin J Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:28 PM To:
        Message 3 of 6 , Jun 21, 2011
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          Jan Savitt.

          Dave W.

          -----Original Message-----
          From: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com [mailto:RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com] On
          Behalf Of Martin J
          Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:28 PM
          To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
          Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: Ozzie Nelson AHO: An Underrated Band?


          Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I'd
          nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I'm pretty sure if this organization had
          recorded and toured in the U.S. the name and the music would have been
          recognized by critics, both contemporary and modern, as one of the most
          swinging, jazz-oriented groups of the mid-30's.


          --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Dutch" <dutch1910@...> wrote:
          >
          > I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940
          yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one of
          the more underrated bands of the 1930s.
          >
          > Some of the band's songs are absolutely first-rate musically, and even
          Ozzie's vocals, while not the greatest, are at least competent. Harriet
          Hilliard and Rose Ann Stevens turned in some fine vocals as well.
          >
          > Does anyone agree, or is it just me?
          >
          > Who would you nominate as the most underrated band of the 1930s?
          >
          > Best,
          > Dutch 1910
          >




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        • stevenabrams78jazz
          A good choice but I would like to nominate the Frankie and Johnny Orch as a fine territory type band...very blues oriented also. Then of course there is also
          Message 4 of 6 , Jun 22, 2011
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            A good choice but I would like to nominate the Frankie and Johnny Orch
            as a fine territory type band...very blues oriented also.
            Then of course there is also Willie Farmer

            > Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I'd
            > nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I'm pretty sure if this organization had
            > recorded and toured in the U.S. the name and the music would have been
            > recognized by critics, both contemporary and modern, as one of the most
            > swinging, jazz-oriented groups of the mid-30's.
          • Randy Skretvedt
            I agree that the Ozzie Nelson band is a very good one indeed, once it hits its stride around 1935. In the earliest records, Ozzie is clearly emulating Rudy
            Message 5 of 6 , Jun 22, 2011
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              I agree that the Ozzie Nelson band is a very good one indeed, once it hits its stride around 1935. In the earliest records, Ozzie is clearly emulating Rudy Vallee vocally, and the band is rather stiff and unswinging, but eventually it really warms up. The baritone sax of Charlie Buebeck added a distinctive sound, and the arrangements added sparkle to pedestrian songs like "You Can't Run Away from Love Tonight." Later records like "Says My Heart" and especially "The Folks Who Live on the Hill" are just wonderful.

              I am fond of the earliest (late '20s) records of Hal Kemp, Jan Garber and Horace Heidt, all of whom led good hot dance bands prior to 1930. After that, Kemp became a very sweet band with gimmicky unison clarinets and "tucka-tucka" muted trumpets; Garber became a Guy Lombardo clone; and Horace Heidt had to use that dreadful steel guitar in every arrangement. But, as I say, prior to 1930--great stuff.

              Dave W is right, the Jan Savitt band is often surprisingly swinging, even if (IMHO) they overused that shuffle-rhythm technique.

              Also underrated: Irving Aaronson's Commanders and the Coon-Sanders Nighthawks. Both bands had terrific arrangements and some very talented soloists.


              --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "David Weiner" <djwein@...> wrote:
              >
              > Jan Savitt.
              >
              > Dave W.
              >
              > -----Original Message-----
              > From: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com [mailto:RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com] On
              > Behalf Of Martin J
              > Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:28 PM
              > To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
              > Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: Ozzie Nelson AHO: An Underrated Band?
              >
              >
              > Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I'd
              > nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I'm pretty sure if this organization had
              > recorded and toured in the U.S. the name and the music would have been
              > recognized by critics, both contemporary and modern, as one of the most
              > swinging, jazz-oriented groups of the mid-30's.
              >
              >
              > --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Dutch" <dutch1910@> wrote:
              > >
              > > I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940
              > yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one of
              > the more underrated bands of the 1930s.
              > >
              > > Some of the band's songs are absolutely first-rate musically, and even
              > Ozzie's vocals, while not the greatest, are at least competent. Harriet
              > Hilliard and Rose Ann Stevens turned in some fine vocals as well.
              > >
              > > Does anyone agree, or is it just me?
              > >
              > > Who would you nominate as the most underrated band of the 1930s?
              > >
              > > Best,
              > > Dutch 1910
              > >
              >
              >
              >
              >
              > ------------------------------------
              >
              > ------------------------------------
              >
              > Yahoo! Groups Links
              >
            • David Weiner
              Nelson did a great run of hot instrumentals for Bluebird in 1937-38 - The Black Cat, Subway, Don t Be That Way, The Jellyfish, Goblin Band, etc., that
              Message 6 of 6 , Jun 22, 2011
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                Nelson did a great run of hot instrumentals for Bluebird in 1937-38 - "The
                Black Cat," "Subway," "Don't Be That Way," "The Jellyfish," Goblin Band,"
                etc., that stand up to any band of the era - fine, imaginative arrangements,
                Charlie Buebeck's baritone improvising over the arranged passages and the
                Bix-inspired trumpet of Bo Ashford.

                Dave Weiner

                -----Original Message-----
                From: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com [mailto:RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com] On
                Behalf Of Randy Skretvedt
                Sent: Wednesday, June 22, 2011 2:19 PM
                To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
                Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: Ozzie Nelson AHO: An Underrated Band?

                I agree that the Ozzie Nelson band is a very good one indeed, once it hits
                its stride around 1935. In the earliest records, Ozzie is clearly emulating
                Rudy Vallee vocally, and the band is rather stiff and unswinging, but
                eventually it really warms up. The baritone sax of Charlie Buebeck added a
                distinctive sound, and the arrangements added sparkle to pedestrian songs
                like "You Can't Run Away from Love Tonight." Later records like "Says My
                Heart" and especially "The Folks Who Live on the Hill" are just wonderful.

                I am fond of the earliest (late '20s) records of Hal Kemp, Jan Garber and
                Horace Heidt, all of whom led good hot dance bands prior to 1930. After
                that, Kemp became a very sweet band with gimmicky unison clarinets and
                "tucka-tucka" muted trumpets; Garber became a Guy Lombardo clone; and Horace
                Heidt had to use that dreadful steel guitar in every arrangement. But, as I
                say, prior to 1930--great stuff.

                Dave W is right, the Jan Savitt band is often surprisingly swinging, even if
                (IMHO) they overused that shuffle-rhythm technique.

                Also underrated: Irving Aaronson's Commanders and the Coon-Sanders
                Nighthawks. Both bands had terrific arrangements and some very talented
                soloists.


                --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "David Weiner" <djwein@...> wrote:
                >
                > Jan Savitt.
                >
                > Dave W.
                >
                > -----Original Message-----
                > From: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com [mailto:RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com] On
                > Behalf Of Martin J
                > Sent: Tuesday, June 21, 2011 12:28 PM
                > To: RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com
                > Subject: [RedHotJazz] Re: Ozzie Nelson AHO: An Underrated Band?
                >
                >
                > Immediately, the Blue Rhythm Band comes to mind, but on reflection, I'd
                > nominate Willie Lewis and his Orch. I'm pretty sure if this organization
                had
                > recorded and toured in the U.S. the name and the music would have been
                > recognized by critics, both contemporary and modern, as one of the most
                > swinging, jazz-oriented groups of the mid-30's.
                >
                >
                > --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, "Dutch" <dutch1910@> wrote:
                > >
                > > I was listening to some of my Ozzie Nelson collection from c. 1932-1940
                > yesterday, and it occurred to me that the Nelson Orchestra is perhaps one
                of
                > the more underrated bands of the 1930s.
                > >
                > > Some of the band's songs are absolutely first-rate musically, and even
                > Ozzie's vocals, while not the greatest, are at least competent. Harriet
                > Hilliard and Rose Ann Stevens turned in some fine vocals as well.
                > >
                > > Does anyone agree, or is it just me?
                > >
                > > Who would you nominate as the most underrated band of the 1930s?
                > >
                > > Best,
                > > Dutch 1910
                > >
                >
                >
                >
                >
                > ------------------------------------
                >
                > ------------------------------------
                >
                > Yahoo! Groups Links
                >




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