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New Orleans Swamp Donkeys, The: Slightly Concussed (Live At De Melkbus)

The New Orleans Swamp Donkeys formed in 2012 and have held their roots firmly in the traditional jazz of New Orleans. They began their adventure in small clubs and local festivals and have now performed on the global stage as evidenced by their most recent two disc set Slightly Concussed (Live At De Melkbus), performed in Dordrecht, Netherlands. The concerts took place in 2015 and 2016 with this set covering all the highlights.

The band mix standards and covers all arranged with their incredible horn arrangements and a feel good vibe. The band does a fine job of channeling the great jazz of yesteryear with fabulous renditions of classics such as: "Hello Dolly", "Star Dust", "On the Sunny Side of the Street", "Just a Gigolo" and "Dinah" to name but a few. Searing solos of trumpet, saxophone and trombone can be heard throughout but it's not just the horns that provide all the highlights. The rhythm section rocks as well, propelling these feel good melodies with passion and gusto. One of the most distinctive features of the band are the lead vocals of James Williams. His voice has an uncanny resemblance to Louis Armstrong which further lends a retro vibe to the band's huge horn arrangements. It is only fitting the disc ends with one of Louise Armstrong's best known songs "What A Wonderful World", a nice homage to Satchmo for sure. Love the tuba and sax in this one.

This is old school big band jazz played with class and care. These cats certainly have respect for the past creating many wonderful moments to be savoured by all fans of big band music. Recommended!

2015 line-up:
James Williams (trumpet, vocals)
Haruka Kikuchi (trombone)
Connor Stewart (saxophone)
Samuel Friend (banjo)
Wessell Anderson IV (tuba)
Joshua Marotta (percussion)

2016 line-up:
James Williams (trumpet, vocals)
Miles Lyons (trombone)
Marcus Miller (saxophone)
Samuel Friend (banjo)
Edwin Brown (tuba)
Joshua Marotta (percussion)

Track Listing:
Disc I
1. Hello Dolly (2016)
2. Buddy Bolden (2015)
3. Star Dust (2015)
4. Rosetta (2015)
5. Just a Gigolo (2016)
6. Struttin' with Some BBQ (2016)
7. Rocking Chair (2015)
8. Do You Know What It Means? (2016)
9. Charleston (2015)
10. On the Sunny Side of the Street (2016)

Disc II
1. I'm Confessin' (2016)
2. Dinah (2016)
3. September in the Rain (2015)
4. Up a Lazy River (2016)
5. I'm Your Mailman (2016)
6. All of Me (2016)
7. Swamp Donkeys Theme Song (2015)
8. Tonight, You Belong to Me (2015)
9. Theme from Game of Thrones (2016)
10. What a Wonderful World (2016)

Added: September 20th 2017
Reviewer: Jon Neudorf
Related Link: Band's Official Site
Hits: 368
Language: english

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