CD The Memphis Hang (CD 1324849),
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The Memphis Hang

  • 1. Well, You Needn't
    2. Seduced
    3. Mound Bayou
    4. That Note Costs a Dollar
    5. Can't Take You Nowhere
    6. Secret Love
    7. Not When I've Been Drinkin'
    8. Blue Turning Gray Over You
    9. Memphis Hang, The
    10. Goodbye Porkpie Hat
    11. Cool
  • Additional Info
    Manufacturer Part Number (MPN): 502

  • Credits
    ProducerJim Shearer
    EngineerTom Clary; Charlie Wood

    Personnel: Jim Shearer (tuba); Charlie Wood (vocals, piano, Fender Rhodes piano, Hammond b-3 organ); Joe Restivo, Joey Restivo (guitar); Billy Gibson (harmonica); Tom Clary (trumpet); Tim Goodwin (acoustic bass); Tony Lonardo (drums).
    Audio Mixers: Jim Shearer; Charlie Wood.
    Liner Note Author: Jim Shearer.
    Photographers: Lucy Hathcote; Keith Soltys.
    Arrangers: Jim Shearer; Tom Clary; Charlie Wood.
    This CD's title, The Memphis Hang, may make it sound like the music on this lively set was made at a very loose jam session that took place at 3 in the morning. It is true that the music was performed (as it says on the liner notes) "with no preconceived notions," but it is not sound explorations or filled with freely improvised and intuitive group improvisations. In reality this is a reunion of four musical friends who are familiar with each other's playing. The music is filled with blues, standards, and obscurities, sometimes punctuated by quotes from other songs. Tuba player Jim Shearer can sound like he is in a brass band but at other times comes across as a bop-based soloist. On Big Bill Broonzy's "Not When I've Been Drinkin,'" he quotes the entire blues chorus that Lester Young played in the 1957 telecast of The Sound Of Jazz. On "Blue Turning Gray Over You" via overdubbing, he forms a tuba quartet to re-create a recorded trombone solo; it's not as scary as it sounds! Charlie Wood contributes good-time vocals (in the spirit but in a much better voice than Leon Redbone) along with some fine organ and piano playing. Billy Gibson's harmonica is a major asset to the core group while the guest appearances of trumpeter Tom Clary are quite welcome. Ranging from Fats Waller to Thelonious Monk with a bow towards Charles Mingus ("'Goodbye Pork Pie Hat""), this is a consistently fun set of spirited yet relaxed music that, come to think of it, does sound like a late-night hang. ~ Scott Yanow

  • Critic Reviews
    JazzTimes (p.92) - "The pairing of organist Charlie Wood and tuba player Jim Shearer makes for some quirkily charming music on this eclectic outing."
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