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Let the Good Times Roll (The Definitive Black & Blue Sessions (Paris, France 1973))

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Album Review

Helen Humes had been retired for several years (and off record since 1961) when she began her comeback with this set. Recorded for the French Black & Blue label and made available domestically on a Classic Jazz LP, the album mostly features the veteran swing singer doing remakes, some of which top her earlier versions. Louis Jordan's "They Raided the Joint" is an exciting opener and is matched by "That Old Feeling," "Ooo Baba Leba," "He May Be Your Man" and Humes' classic "A Million Dollar Secret." Particularly strong assets in her notable backup group are tenorman Arnett Cobb, guitarists Al Casey and Clarence "Gatemouth" Brown, pianist Jay McShann and organist Milt Buckner. Wonderful music that deserves to be made widely available.


Born: 23 June 1913 in Louisville, KY

Genre: Jazz

Years Active: '40s, '50s, '60s, '70s, '80s

Helen Humes was a versatile singer equally skilled on blues, swing standards, and ballads. Her cheerful style was always a joy to hear. As a child, she played piano and organ in church, and made her first recordings (ten blues songs in 1927) when she was only 13 and 14. In the 1930s, she worked with Stuff Smith and Al Sears, recording with Harry James in 1937-1938. In 1938, Humes joined Count Basie's Orchestra for three years. Since Jimmy Rushing specialized in blues, Helen Humes mostly got stuck...
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Let the Good Times Roll (The Definitive Black & Blue Sessions (Paris, France 1973)), Helen Humes
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