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Bert's Bits -- CD Review:  New Orleans Delight Volume 2
Earlville Association for Ragtime Lovers Yearning
for Jazz Advancement and Socialization
by Bert Thompson

time:  73 m. 42 s.
Put on Your Old Grey Bonnet*; I Shall Not Be Moved*; C’est Magnifique*; I Can’t
Escape from You; Quand On S’est Vu*; The Laughing Samba; Jambalaya*; Over the
Waves; Moonlight Bay; Kid Thomas’ Boogie Woogie.

Recorded at Seaside Jazzklub, Frederikssund, Denmark, Nov. 30, 2002.

Personnel: Cliff “Kid” Bastien, trumpet, slapstick, vocal*; George Berry, tenor sax;
Bengt Hansson, trombone; Kjeld Brandt, clarinet; Göran Magnusson, piano; Erling
Lindhardt, banjo; Stefan Kärfve, string bass; Claus Lindhardt, drums.

Where Is My Wandering Boy Tonight?; If I Could Hear My Mother Pray Again; I’ll
Be Your Sweetheart; Rivers of Babylon; Drifting; I Saw the Light; Loveland and
You; When They Ring the Golden Bells; Jesus Is Calling; Melody of Love; Fifty
Miles of Elbow Room; The One Rose.

Recorded at Marilyn Rogers’ home, Dublin Line, Halton Hills, Ontario, Canada, Fall

Personnel: Cliff “Kid” Bastien, trumpet, Marilyn Rogers, piano.

This CD contains tracks from the Bastien/Berry 2002 visit with New Orleans Delight
that were not included on Music Mecca CD 4024-2 (which was vol. 1, although not
so designated there), and also some “bonus” duet tracks.

To start with the latter, these were tunes that Bastien wanted New Orleans Delight
to play during the tour.  He laid them down on a cassette tape, the melody line
(muted trumpet) and the chords (piano), and sent them to the band so the members
could learn them. Almost all of the tracks are simply “once or twice through” each
strain of the tune and will, I think, be of somewhat limited appeal, although I did
enjoy hearing Bastien’s conception of the lead lines.

The first ten tunes contain the meat of the CD and are a worthy follow-up to the first
CD.  Here, as there, all participants are in fine form, Bastien displaying the Kid
Thomas influence—the flares, the aluminum derby mute work, the phrasing—as we
might expect, and Berry providing solid support as well as contributing excellent
solos, inventive and fluid.  The rest of the band evidence what has become their
accustomed mastery of the New Orleans style.  

The tune list contains a couple of eyebrow-raisers.  One doesn’t hear many New
Orleans bands tackle The Laughing Samba, but New Orleans bands played “for
dancing” and had a repertoire to accommodate that, so no one in New Orleans of
yore would have been surprised.  The other, new to me, was Quand On S’est Vu, a
simple, single-strain French-Canadian folk song, much in the vein of Laissez les
Bons Temps Rouler, and quite catchy.  Most of the others will be familiar to most
readers, but as always it is good to hear how they are treated by these musicians.  I
wish that there could have been a little more variety in tempos (the only “slow” tune
being Moonlight Bay), but then I don’t know if there was enough other suitable
material in the vault to allow for the inclusion, say, of a blues or two.  However,
there is nothing to fault in the renditions of these tunes here.

Since neither Bastien nor Berry are still with us, permission to issue these tracks had
to be sought from the respective estates, and fortunately that was forthcoming,
thanks in large part to the good offices of Brian Towers, whose notes in the
accompanying booklet are most informative and contain many marvelous pictures.  
He knew Bastien well, having been a member of the Magnolia Brass Band which
was led by Bastien.  The notes give a full account of Bastien’s and Berry’s
backgrounds and their coming together.

This is a disc well worth having, and ordering information can be obtained by
contacting neworle@nsdelight.dk (e-mail) or visiting www.new-orleans-delight.dk
(web site).  I’m unaware of any plans for other distribution.
Bert Thompson