- Released: August 23, 2005
- Label: Asv Living Era
- 1.Swingin' Down the Lane
- 2.Wasbash Blues
- 3.The World Is Waiting for the Sunrise
- 4.Who's Sorry Now? - (featuring Al Jolson)
- 5.The One I Love Belongs to Somebody Else
- 6.California Here I Come
- 8.Some Other Day, Some Other Girl
- 9.I'll See You in My Dreams
- 11.Together, We Two
- 13.Sweet Georgia Brown
- 14.Lazy Day
- 15.A Sentimental Gentleman from Georgia
- 16.Blue Prelude
- 17.Junk Man
- 18.For All We Know
- 19.Life Belongs When You're in Love
- 20.No Greater Love
- 21.Stompin' at the Savoy
- 22.I Wanna Be in Winchell's Column
- 23.I'll Never Have to Dream Again
- 24.It Had to Be You
- 25.On the Alamo
- 26.You've Got Me Crying Again
Isham Jones: Bobby Jones , John Dillard.
Personnel: Eddie Stone (vocals, violin); Woody Herman (vocals, clarinet, alto saxophone, baritone saxophone); Curt Massey, Frank Bessinger, Al Jolson, Bing Crosby (vocals); Tommy Moore , George Wartner (guitar); Andy Sannella (slide guitar); Charles McNeill, Harry Reser (banjo); Alfie Evans (violin, clarinet, alto saxophone); Artie Vanasec (violin, saxophone); Dan Yates, Leo Murphy, Victor Young (violin); Al Mauling (clarinet, oboe, alto saxophone); Larry Abbott, Don Watt, Victor Hauprich, Milt Yaner (clarinet, alto saxophone); Tony Zimmers (clarinet, tenor saxophone); Billy Richards (tenor saxophone); George Thow, Clarence Willard, Chelsea Quealey, Roy Johnston, Charles Rocco, George Walters, Johnny Dillard, Bobby Lee Jones (trumpet); Frankie Trumbauer (cornet); Joe Bishop (flugelhorn); Sonny Lee, Russ Jenner, Andy Sindelar, Carroll Martin, Wendell Delory, Guy Carey, Jack Jenney, Miff Mole, Red Ballard, Bud Graham (trombone); Richard Kissinger, John Kuhn, Louis Cassagne (tuba); Harold "Hal" Smith, Tommy Satterfield, Gil Bowers, Roy Bargy, Rube Bloom (piano); Ray Michaels, Art Layfield, Walter Lageson, Joe Frank, Tom Stacks, Ward Archer (drums).
Additional personnel: Al Jolson, Woody Herman, Bing Crosby.
Liner Note Author: Gerry Stonestreet.
Recording information: 1921-1947.
Unknown Contributor Roles: Woody Herman; Louis Panico; Harry Reser.
At its best the Isham Jones Orchestra was capable of playing real jazz. The strongest and hottest instrumental tracks woven into this Memphis Archives compilation emanate a substantiality approaching that of early Fletcher Henderson or very early Duke Ellington. "Farewell Blues" and "Memphis Blues," recorded in January 1923, swing a little on the strength of the melodies. Even "I'm Sitting on Top of the World" (not to be confused with the blues tune by Howlin' Wolf) cooks with inspired precision. "It's the Blues" and "Three Thirty Blues" are among the best recordings this band ever made. Most satisfying was the expressive cornet playing of Louis Panico, an element that was missing after September 1924. Panico's contribution to this band was roughly comparable to what Louis Metcalf, Arthur Whetsol, and Bubber Miley accomplished on some of Ellington's earliest recordings. Another aspect of Isham Jones is also documented here: it was essentially that of a pit orchestra accustomed to backing up pop vocalists and vaudeville entertainers. Bearing in mind the fact that this orchestra worked regularly with Al Jolson, the selections featuring singers -- particularly Billy Jones and Ernest Hare, usually billed as The Happiness Boys -- illustrate this important function most effectively. Even quite a number of the instrumental performances are noticeably reined in by shuffle rhythms that hardly manage to break free of the vaudevillian pop mode. This might explain why many jazz historians have concentrated on Isham Jones the composer of great melodies destined to become jazz standards rather than on Isham Jones the leader of an all-purpose popular dance band that periodically incorporated real jazz into its performing itinerary. ~ arwulf arwulf