- Released: February 28, 1989
- Label: Sbme Special Mkts.
Additional personnel: Dr. John, Dizzy Gillespie, Branford Marsalis.
Employing traditional brass band instrumentation (generally two trumpets, two saxophones, trombone, sousaphone, snare and bass drummer), the Dirty Dozen filter a turn-of-the-century heritage through the more contemporary lenses of modern jazz, R&B and funk, with touches of Latin American dance rhythms thrown in for good measure. The results are nothing less than a condensed--and supremely danceable--history of roots music.
VOODOO, the group's 1987 release, finds the Dozen in fine form. Guest appearances by such jazz/R&B legends as Dizzy Gillespie, whose inimitable scatting propels "Oop Pop A Dah"), Dr. John, who takes lead vocals on the Bobby Womack classic "It's All Over Now," and Branford Marsalis, who climbs aboard for a funked-up re-working of Charlie Parker's "Moose The Mooche," highlight the set. The relentless pace of groove-centered shuffles such as Tony Dagradi's "Gemini Rising" and the Dozen-penned title track testify to the ensemble's formidable power at moving booties. At the same time, superior musicianship from all involved (notably Kirk Joseph, whose dexterity on the sousaphone can make the instrument sound uncannily like electric bass) gives evidence of seasoned jazz training. VOODOO is a thoroughly enjoyable outing that fuses traditionalism with a fresh, eminently danceable contemporary approach.