i am in my early 60's and have played and listened to all manner of music all of my life. i always loved big band swing - grew up with my folks playing benny goodman and glenn miller on the "hi-fi" all of the time. recently, i acquired the jasmine 2 disc remaster of the benny goodman 1938 carnegie hall concert (excellent, i might add). i was haunted by the bobby hackett channeling of bix's "i'm coming virginia" solo in the "history of jazz" section of the concert. thus began the youtube bix exploration, followed by some reading and, ultimately, acquisition of primo's "the art of bix beiderbecke" - a great starter set.
like all of us, i am stunned at the genius of the man and the beauty of what he produced. i now understand why bixophiles are said to cherish every note...in all, there were so few of them !
with that as background, here's my question -
everyone lauds "singin' the blues" and "i'm coming virginia"...and with good reason. others have other favorites (some of mine are "riverboat shuffle", "at the jazz band ball", "sorry" and "since my best gal turned me down").
but for the life of me, i can't understand why more people don't talk about being floored by bix's acrobatics on "clarinet marmalade". the combination of inventiveness, dexterity, precision, speed and breath are, to me, mindboggling. not to mention the absolute wonder of his perfect ensemble chorus with tram right after the mertz piano solo.
am i missing something ? does anyone else out there believe that "clarinet marmalade" doesn't get its proper due in the bix pantheon ?
great to enjoy this with all of you.
new haven, CT
(ps) - grew up in jackson heights, queens, just a mile or two from 43-30 46th street, sunnyside.
(pps) - favorites list should have included "clementine". artie shaw was right: "swings like mad" !