Firehouse Five Plus Two: Danny Alguire (trumpet); Ward Kimball (trombone, vocals, sound effects); Ed Penner (tuba, bass saxophone); John Lucas, Clarke Mallery, Tom Sharpsteen, George Probert (clarinet); Frank Thomas (piano, celeste); Harper Goff, Dick Roberts (banjo); Jim MacDonald, Monte Mountjoy, Jerry Hamm (drums).
Producers: Lester Koenig, Robert D. Kirstein and Neshuhi Ertegun.
Engineers: Lowell Frank, Val Valentin, Roy DuNann, Seth Perkins, John Palladino.
Recorded between 1949 and 1954. Originally released on Good Time Jazz as 3 titles "The Firehouse Five Plus Two Story" Vol. 1 (12010), Vol. 2 (12011), and Vol. 3 (12012). Includes original release liner notes by Lester Koenig.
Digitally remastered by Gary Hobish (1991, Fantasy Studios, Berkeley, California).
This double CD reissues the first three LPs by the Firehouse Five Plus Two, a very popular Dixieland group in the 1950s. In addition to trombonist Ward Kimball (who occasionally lets loose on a siren), the main soloists are generally trumpeter Danny Alguire and either Clarke Mallery, Tom Sharpsteen, or George Probert on clarinet. The spirited jamming mixes together standards, a few obscurities, and an occasional original (including "Firehouse Stomp," "Fireman's Lament," and "Firechief Rag"). Although not exactly innovative, the music is quite fun and easily recommended to Dixieland fans. ~ Scott Yanow