This Saturday Joe Bev presents 78 RPM Jazz with a Sense of Humor: "Remastered Rhapsodies, including:
The World premiere of the remastered "Rhapsody in Blue - The Paul Whiteman Orchestra, conducted by Nat Shilkret, with George Gershwin on piano (1927)
Creole Rhapsody - Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra (1931)
Fifi's Rhapsody - The John Kirby Orchestra (1941)
Ebony Rhapsody - Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra (1934)
The Guy With The Slide Trombone (Hungarian Rhapsody) The Tommy Dorsey Orchestra (1945)
Melancholy Rhapsody - The Harry James Orchestra (1941)
Lazy Rhapsody - Duke Ellington and His Famous Orchestra (1932)
Second Rhapsody - The Paul Whiteman Orchestra, with George Gershwin on piano (1931)
What makes The Jazz-O-Rama Hour unique is that Bev remasters all the 78 RPM records he plays.
"Most CD collections compress these old recordings to limit the hiss, pops and crackles. The result is a loss of the full depth of the music. I bring back all the bass, treble and mid-tones, so you can hear it all," explains Bev, who adds that listeners will notice a soft high pitched hiss on "Rhapsody in Blue," a small price to pay for the rich sound of Whiteman's band.
George Gershwin with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra conducted by Nat Shilkret
“Rhapsody in Blue ” (Victor 35822, 1927)
George Gershwin had already established himself as one of the great American popular songwriters when he turned his attention to classical music. “Rhapsody in Blue” was his first major classical work, and the first such work to prominently feature jazz themes and conventions. Although debatable whether or not it is strictly speaking jazz, it nevertheless brilliantly captures the spirit of the jazz age and has become an enduring classic. Gershwin published “Rhapsody in Blue” in 1924 and premiered it in New York backed by Paul Whiteman and His Orchestra.
That 1924 debut performance was capture on record (Victor 55225), but it was recorded acoustically as electronic microphones had not yet been invented. Despite the poor sound quality, many people prefer it because of its raw energy (the tempo is quite a bit faster than what you may be used to) and historical significance. It is certainly worth hearing this version for those reasons (you can find it here: part 1 / part 2 ). However, Gershwin would make an electric recording in 1927 – again backed by the Paul Whiteman Orchestra (although this time conducted by guest bandleader Nat Shilkret) – and it is this 1927 version that has proven most influential.
In the 1927 version, the tempo has decreased and the song is fully realized in the form modern audiences will recognize it in. The sound is clear and the playing is marvelous: disciplined and yet full of character. The record is a back-and-forth dialogue between Gershwin’s playful solo piano and the sweeping majesty of the full orchestra. Almost everyone will recognize the music, and yet it is so powerful that it entrances again and again. From the opening, swirling, laughing clarinet solo to the final, full-orchestra crescendo, it is a masterpiece.
Joe Bev has been producing radio in many genres since 1971 when he was 12. At 19 in 1980, Bev became the youngest person to produce a radio show for public radio. He co-hosted The Jazz Show with Garret Gega in the early 80s, a four hour a week mix classic jazz and comedy. Bev also worked for WBGO, Jazz 88 in Newark, NJ and produced documentaries for WNYC New York Public Radio on jazz legends including Louis Armstrong, Wynton Marsalis, Count Basie, Woody Herman, Cab Calloway, and Lionel Hampton.
Bev also produces, directs, writes and voices half of The Comedy-O-Rama Hour, which is has been highest rated radio show on Cult Radio A-Go-Go! for many weeks. Joe Bev's other weekly radio show, The Jazz-O-Rama Hour debuted at #2.
Last week, the veteran voice actor added his third hour for Cult Radio, called The Joe Bev Experience which airs right after The Jazz-O-Rama Hour.
More about Waterlogg Productions at http://www.waterlogg.com.
An announcement about this week's Joe Bev Experience follows.
Video for this week's "Joe Bev 3-Hour Block":