Saturday, 27 February 2010

Oh, so we think we have something to say...

Yeah, yeah, I hear you. Who doesn't have a blog these days? Whose opinions are worth listening to once, much less cementing in a blog? I suppose it was inevitable, though. Not content to drone on about Paul Specht and his Orchestra or who was in Woody Herman's Second Herd amongst ourselves, we thought we'd inflict it on you. I bet it'll read better when you're drunk. Actually, it may write better when we're drunk. All these things to discover.

Still, no one's forcing you to read it (yet...) and it's free, so take it or leave it for good or ill. We're hoping it'll prove interesting (hoping?! prove?! -Ed.) and if not, hell, we'll jack it in as a bad deal. But look forward to random rants about what we're listening to, what we've drunk, what we're listening to when we're drunk and what we're drinking when we're listening (did I leave anything out?). Oh and yes, bits about us, the band, or at least what our lawyers will allow us to say.

And something - at least potentially - interesting with which to leave you. (Ha. No sentences ending with prepositions here, boy. Although I once had a proposition end with a sentence. Long story. Long sentence, too. -Ed.)

Ever heard of the Nicholas Brothers? Well I should hope so. One always feels they're somewhat overshadowed by Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly (and even he reckoned they were a bit neglected back in the day - rather like Roy Eldridge, Krupa's best trumpetter - but more of him in a future post...). But here's a solid bit of dancing that'll make you break your back trying to imitate that thing where they run up a wall, or at least leave giant shoe-marks on the wall you can laugh at as you wait for the ambulance to arrive. The clip's from Glenn Miller's second movie (I know, Glenn Miller? But what can you do, it's Bunny's big dream to play in their trumpet section - we haven't the heart to tell him what happened to Miller on 15 December 1944... or that the Swing Era's over... actually, there's a lot we haven't the heart to tell Bunny...) , Orchestra Wives, in which the Nicholas Brothers - well, basically go nuts. It's brilliant. Wipes the floor with their earlier dance routine to Tuxedo Junction in Miller's first movie, Sun Valley Serenade, and that's saying a lot.

ANYhoo. The tune is one of Miller's biggest hits, (I Gotta Gal In) Kalamazoo. The band's in top form, Marion Hutton was never cuter - and watch for Jackie Gleason and Cesar Romero (y'know, the guy who played the joker in the original 60s Batman? Wait, you don't even know who Jackie Gleason is, right? Sigh...) on bass and piano respectively.

Swing out, gates! Solid, jack!