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Catamount Community Radio - June 27, 2010

I overslept a bit this morning, but I made it on time. My signature screeching tires were apropos.

Quite a few things up my sleeve today. A little Congolese rumba, Fred Anderson, Lonnie Johnson, and Alec Wilder.

In the thirties and forties, Congolese musicians picked up on the worldwide "rumba" craze, fusing the Caribbean sounds (which indeed had African origins) with their own music, thereby inventing the Congolese rumba. Such sweet guitar picking!

Fred Anderson was a free jazz saxophonist from Chicago who died a few days ago at 81 years of age. He also owned a club, The Velvet Lounge. He never tried to get famous, and was actually surprised that so many people dug his music. As a youngster, he was inspired by Lester Young and Charlie Parker, but he doesn't sound like them. Anderson was one of the founders of the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians. Since not many establishments were interested in hiring avant garde jazz outfits, the musicians created an organization that could showcase their talents. His Velvet Lounge was an important venue that allowed musicians to play whatever they wanted.

Alec Wilder (1907-1980) was a composer who straddled the line between popular music and classical. Among his songs, "A Child is Born," "I'll Be Around," "Moon and Sand."

Some of his pieces have funny titles, like "Her Old Man was Suspicious," "Neurotic Goldfish," or "House Detective Registers." He was good friends with Frank Sinatra, Peggy Lee, and Tony Bennett. He loved puzzles, and wrote them himself. He also liked to talk and laugh. Fascinating dude.

Lonnie Johnson (1899-1970) was an important guitarist from New Orleans, a pioneer of the single note soloing style. He was famous as a blues player, but he was equally at home doing show tunes or jazz.

In 1925 he won a blues contest and was awarded a recording contract. He later said, "I guess I would have done anything to get recorded - it just happened to be a blues contest, so I played the blues." He played with Duke Ellington and Louis Armstrong at different points of his career. He also had some lean times where he worked in a steel mill or as a janitor. People remember him today for his innovative guitar work, but in his time he was thought of mainly as a crooner.

Aren't we informative today?

Catamount Community Radio, Sunday mornings 10-12 (East Coast), on WWCU-FM.

1. Brad Mehldau – I’ve Grown Accustomed to her Face
2. Joe Lovano – Monk’s Mood
3. African Jazz & Grand Kalle – Ambiance Kalle Catho
4. Slim Gaillard – Jumpin’ at the Record Shop
5. Nickel Creek – Tomorrow is a Long Time
6. Art Tatum – I’ve Got the World on a String
7. Bruce Springsteen – Magic
8. The Mills Brothers w/ Count Basie – I’ll Be Around
9. Alec Wilder – Footnotes to a Summer Love
10. Larry John Wilson – Ohoopa River Bottomland
11. Fred Anderson – Ladies in Love
12. Love Unlimited Orchestra – Strange Games and Things (fragment)
13. OK Jazz – On entre OK, on sort KO
14. Lonnie Johnson – Jet Black Blues
15. Dinah Washington / Max Richter – On the Nature of Daylight / This Bitter Earth
16. Stevie Wonder – If You Really Love Me
17. Lou Reed – Dirty Boulevard
18. Coleman Hawkins – While We’re Young
19. Charlie Mariano Sextet – Trouble is a Man
20. Manhattan Chamber Orchestra – It’s Silk, Feel It
21. Elvis Presley – Spinout
22. Tom T. Hall – I Flew Over our House Last Night
23. Sun Ra – Angels and Demons at Play
24. Duke Ellington – East St. Louis Toodle-Oo
25. The Alec Wilder Octet – His First Long Pants
26. Iggy Pop – New Values
27. The Cosmic Rays w/ Sun Ra – Daddy Gonna Tell You No Lies
28. Sun Ra – title unknown
29. Lonnie Johnson – Tomorrow Night
30. Hank Jones – A Child is Born



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