Features
Reviews
Must Hear Music
Reviews Archives
Archives
Bargain Basement
Downloads
Music DVD
Upstart
Pipsqueaks
 
 
 
Features
Reviews
Archives
Send Us Mail
Contact Us
 
 

Louis Prima
Jump Jive An' Wail: The Essential Louis Prima
Capitol Records
www.louisprima.com


You know Louis Prima's music whether you realize it or not. Before you argue with me, think back to watching The Jungle Book as a child. Remember "I Wan'na Be Like You (The Monkey Song)"? That wasn't just any monkey singing it; that was Louis Prima. But even if you aren't familiar with that song - and shame on you if you aren't! - Prima's music has shown up in some of the most unlikely places. When David Lee Roth crooned "Just A Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody", he wasn't just singing his own words. Oh no, that was Prima, too.

This new 26-song Prima collection is filled with more than enough music to form a proper introduction to the man's work. Like Louis Armstrong, Prima was both a singer and a trumpeter. But whereas Armstrong leaned heavily on traditional New Orleans jazz sounds, Prima music swung with a large dollop of Italian cultural sauce. For example, "Angelina/Zooma Zooma" speaks about a guy who gets fat on Italian food just to spend more time with a pretty waitress.

Everything Prima sings swings, whether it is a standard like "That Old Black Magic", "Pennies From Heaven", and "Just One Of Those Things", or something more traditional, like "St. Louis Blues". Many times, Prima is helped out by wife/vocalist Keely Smith. In some cases, she even sings the trumpeter's praises, as with "The Lip" where she trades vocals with Prima's horn playing.

In addition to being a scary talented musician, Prima also had a great sense of humor. "Civilization (Bongo, Bongo, Bongo)", about a native who prefers the jungle to city life, is packed with musical silliness, including crazy voices.

If you have never seen The Jungle Book and have avoided exposure to David Lee Roth (the latter is forgivable), you nevertheless ought to do yourself the favor of picking up this fun compilation. Even if you don't like big band music, Prima is a category all to himself and goes far beyond just being a big band player/singer. Besides, your life don't mean a thing if it ain't got that swing.

-Dan MacIntosh


Check out more reviews

Talk Back
e-mail the chief

Like this article?
e-mail it to a friend!

 


Mike Doughty



Pink Floyd

-------


South By Southwest 2014
David DeVoe

South By Southwest 2013
David DeVoe

Red Hook Music Festival
George Dow

SXSW 2012
David DeVoe

Our Favorite Records 2011
Hybrid Staff

AWOLNation
Rachel Fredrickson

Kanrocksas
Rachel Fredrickson

Warped Tour 2011
Rachel Fredrickson

Eddie Spaghetti
Melissa Skrbic-Huss

Murder By Death
Mike DeLeo


Mike Doughty
Boulder, CO

Epilogues
Denver, CO

Imagine Dragons
Denver, CO

Sebadoh
Cambridge, MA

Young Magic
Denver, CO

Warped Tour 2012
Denver, CO

Thrice
Denver, CO

Mike Doughty
Denver, CO

MuteMath
Kansas City, MO

Other Lives
Lawrence, KS

Los Campesinos
Boston, MA

The Civil Wars
Lawrence, KS

Ha Ha Tonka
Lawrence, KS

Thrice
Lawrence, KS


 
hybridmagazine.com is updated daily except when it isn't.
New film reviews are posted every week like faulty clockwork.
Wanna write for hybrid? Send us an e-mail.
© 1996-2009 [noun] digital media. All rights reserved worldwide. All content on hybridmagazine.com and levelheadedmusic.com is the intellectual property of Hybrid Magazine and its respective creators. No part of hybridmagazine.com or levelheadedmusic.com may be reproduced in any format without expressed written permission. For complete masthead and physical mailing address, Click Here.