Benny Goodman: And the Angels Sing


And The Angels Sing


Benny Goodman (clarinet)


The Very Best of Benny Goodman (RCA 63730)

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Benny Goodman (clarinet), Ziggy Elman (trumpet), Martha Tilton (vocals), Jess Stacy (piano),

Chris Griffin, Irving Goodman (trumpet); Red Ballard, Vernon Brown (trombone); Hymie Schertzer, Noni Bernardi (alto sax); Jerry Jerome, Arthur Rollini (tenor saxes), Ben Heller (guitar), Harry Goodman (bass), Buddy Schutz (drums)


Composed by Ziggy Elman & Johnny Mercer


Recorded: New York, February 1, 1939


Rating: 93/100 (learn more)

Ziggy Elman ranks high on the list of shamefully overlooked jazz trumpeters. Great section players aren't always the best soloists, but Elman was both. His self-composed feature with Benny Goodman's big band is actually back-to-back pieces. First, Martha Tilton sings what seems like a fairly innocuous 1930s pop song. Then, out of the blue, the band breaks into a riotous klezmer dance (upon which, it turns out, Elman's melody is based). The intended effect is as jarring as a staid goyish wedding reception suddenly overrun by high-spirited Jewish party crashers. This is so unabashedly good-humored, political correct- ness does not apply.

Reviewer: Alan Kurtz

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  • 1 max // May 23, 2009 at 04:14 PM
    i grew-up during the swing area. got to see most of the big bands at the casino gardens ballroom in ocean park (santa monica) and other nearby dance halls. My regret is that i never got to see BG. however, thanks to LPs and CDs i csn visualize and feel the excitement of those attending his concerts. TNX BG!