Jazz Noire Tales Of Dope, Booze & Sleaze
In response to the great popularity of the CD editions of Drink Up – Light Up! and Jazz Noire, and to meet the demands of vinyl collectors, Fantastic Voyage now release highlights of both compilations as 2LP vinyl editions, limited to 500 copies.
Fantastic Voyage followed the hugely-successful Jazz Noire collection by letting the same team return to those sleazy dives and bars, this time homing in on the dope, drink and dubious characters to provide a vivid picture of high-seeking low life between the 1930s and 1950s. The music on Drink Up – Light Up! evokes that time when orchestras swelled, brass sections exploded like fireworks and blues dripped off piano keys onto booze- and tear-stained barroom floors, staggering cast including names like The Man From Harlem and Snuff Dippin’ Mama. The themes are just as relevant to today’s recession-hit climate: the desire to escape by getting high (and the often unfavourable repercussions on relationships). Whether it’s Buddy Banks confessing ‘I Need It Bad (Groove Juice)’ or King Perry requesting ‘Vaccinate Me, Baby’, the selection straddles the whole spectrum of substance-fuelled whoopee, the up- and downsides.
Springing out of Prohibition and the Depression, the set also provides a fascinating glimpse of street life during that period, up to the Korean War, from domestic scenarios to dope slang, quite apart from providing a sublimely evocative listening experience.
The cover and insert text of Drink Up – Light Up! have been carefully designed to pay homage to the hardboiled lurid detection fiction of the period, the perfect packaging for a compilation that will appeal to devotees of Jazz and early R&B.
- Wine-O (Jack McVea and His All Stars)
- Thirsty Mama Blues (Hot Lips Page Trio)
- Sloppy Drunk (Walter Brown with Jay McShann’s Quartet)
- Joy Juice (Dinah Washington with Gus Chappell’s Orchestra)
- When I Get Drunk (Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson and His Orchestra)
- Drinking Blues (Wynonie Harris)
- Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well? (Doc Wheeler and His Sunset Orchestra)
- I Know Who Threw The Whiskey In The Well! (Bull Moose Jackson and His Buffalo Bearcats)
- Bar Fly Blues (Jimmy Witherspoon with Jay McShann Sextette)
- I Need It Bad (Groove Juice) (Buddy Banks Sextette)
- Stinkin’ Drunk (Gene Phillips and His Rhythm Aces)
- Serve Another Round (The Five Keys)
- Red, Red Wine (Milt Buckner and His Beale Street Gang)
- Drink Up - Light Up (Nelson Alexander Trio)
- The Man From Harlem (Cab Calloway and His Orchestra)
- You Go To My Head (Sarah Vaughan with John Kirby and His Orchestra)
- Sweet Marijuana Brown (Barney Bigard Sextet)
- Here Comes The Man With The Jive (Stuff Smith and His Onyx Club Boys)
- The “G” Man Got The “T” Man (Cee Pee Johnson Band)
- Jive I Like (Pearl Traylor with Howard McGhee Orchestra)
- Killin’ Jive (The Cats and The Fiddle)
- Who Put The Benzedrine In Mrs Murphy’s Ovaltine (Harry “The Hipster” Gibson)
- Snuff Dippin’ Mama (Charles Brown with Johnny Moore’s Three Blazers)
- Goofy Dust Blues (Little Willie Littlefield)
- When I’m In My Tea (Jo Jo Adams with Maxwell Davis and His Band)
- Knockin’ Myself Out (Helen Humes with Dexter Gordon’s Orchestra)
- My Good Pott (Doc Pomus with Curley Russell’s All Stars)
- Vaccinate Me, Baby (King Perry and His Orchestra)