Saturday, January 30, 2010

Live: Dance Party Edition

I have been to classical music and jazz concerts, and even a performance by Ravi Shankar, where the audience sat and listened. Yes, these were exciting shows, displays of wonderful artistry. Folk and rock shows can be like that too. And I would gladly go. But sometimes, the performance presenter needs to make sure that there are no seats clogging up the hall, because it’s time to dance!

Big Bad Voodoo Daddy: Oh Yeah


Oh Yeah, indeed. The horns are blowing, the rhythm is tight, and no one has to be told to “get on up”. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy show exactly why they were one of the best new swing bands of the 90s.

Delbert McClinton: Standing on Shaky Ground

[purchase different live version]

Standing on Shaky Ground was written by Walker Ickard, but claimed by Delbert McClinton. McClinton started out backing touring blues musicians, before going on to have hits on the country, pop, and R & B charts. He is one of those artists who is best known to other musicians. His Standing on Shaky Ground really cooks.

The Dirty Dozen Brass Band: Don‘t You Feel My Leg

[purchase studio version]

As the night progresses, there is a point in the show where the band takes the pace down a bit. Now is your chance to get closer to the one you’ve been dancing with at such a furious pace. But how close is too close?

The time is Halloween night, 1993. The scene, Tramps in New York City. As the rest of the Dirty Dozens lay down a groove, front man Gregory tells the tale of an encounter with a rabbit. Then the band goes into a slow burn for a tale of intimacy gone awry. This one comes with a rudeness warning for younger ears.

The Uptones: Rude Boy

[purchase different live version]

And then it’s time to ramp it up again, for a dance that leaves them wanting more. As with much of The Uptones’ work, this one straddles the line between reggae and ska. There is even a dub break toward the end. In reggae, dub is an effect usually created in the studio, but here The Uptones manage it from the stage. It’s a nice trick, and they manage it not only without losing the beat, but also without dropping the energy level.

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