| || || |
A CD made by a band based in Denmark, with half the musicians Danish, half of them Swedish, a German trumpet player and liner notes written by a Belgian: this really is a pan-European production! Im happy to say that the sounds youll hear on this disc are not European at all; they come from the deep South of the United States, more specifically from New Orleans. I have often wondered how these fellows up North and Im also talking now about other Scandinavian groups like Fessors in Denmark, the Magnolia in Norway and the Göta River Jazzmen in Sweden, to name just a few succeed so well in playing this music from the South in such an authentic way. Whatever their secret may be, they prove it once again on this record.
Jelly Roll Morton and if HE wasnt an expert, who was? said: Jazz music is to be played sweet, soft, plenty rhythm. When you have you plenty rhythm with you plenty swing, it becomes beautiful. To start with, you cant make crescendos and diminuendos when one is playing triple forte. You got to be able to come down in order to go up. Thats where a lot of bands from outside New Orleans fail. They see New Orleans music as part of the HOT jazz tradition which of course it IS but they neglect the SWEET side, which makes the music from the Crescent City so different and so immediately recognisable. Judged by Jellys theory, New Orleans Delight comes through with flying colours! Its all there.
Theres a clarinet with a beautiful tone and an expressive vibrato, so typical for real New Orleans reed players. Kjeld Brandt claims to be influenced by George Lewis, but is completely his own man. Just like the master he makes his instrument sing, mourn or jubilate, but he is singing his own very personal song.
Bengt Hansson, who has been playing with the band for 18 months now, brings a very individual voice to the frontline. He sounds unlike any other New Orleans trombone player youve heard before. What he produces here is what I call chicken skin music!
Norbert Susemihl is an old friend, whose playing I enjoyed many times in the past, mainly in New Orleans where he often stayed and worked for several months in a row. He was accepted by the local musicians and treated as one of their own. After playing a parade with the all black Algiers Brass Band, a neighbour asked one of the musicians: Whos that white cat playing with your band? The answer that came is a classic: He aint white man, hes German! Could there be a nicer compliment to a young European musician? Norbert is without any doubt one of the best New Orleans style trumpet players today and his exciting playing is an asset to every band he works with.
Göran Magnussons simple, two-fisted piano playing is exactly what this kind of band needs. In New Orleans terminology: he really stomps that piano, like Billie Pierce, Sing Miller, Louis Gallaud and Joe James did before him.
A father and son playing the same music side by side is something special in these times of generation gaps. Erling (on banjo) and Claus (on drums) Lindhardt perform this remarkable act in an exemplary way. Erling is a banjo player who knows exactly what his task is in a New Orleans band. Hes a model of good taste and fine musicianship. Son Claus is reported to have a lot of experience in Salsa music. I must confess I dont know that much about Salsa, but he sure lays down an exciting New Orleans street beat.
In Stefan Kärfve we have a bass player who is not afraid to use his bow in addition to plucking his bass. The effect is marvellous!
A group of capable, knowledgeable musicians do not necessarily make a good band. Especially in this kind of music, something else is needed: mutual rapport, listening to each other. This is exactly the strongest quality of New Orleans Delight. New Orleans music originally was ensemble music, not a series of solos with an ensemble chorus at the beginning and one at the end of a tune, like in many other jazz styles. There is plenty of ensemble playing on this CD and the musical harmony is remarkable all the time.
The icing on the cake is the presence on some tracks of the lovely singer Kristin Lomholt. This young Danish singer is a graduate from the New England Conservatory of Music in Boston, USA., where she studied from 1995 to 1998. She started her career as a vocalist and pianist in Spain in 1992. When she was living in the USA she worked in several venues on the East Coast with modern jazz musicians like Charlie Haden and Cecil McBee. She leads her own groups in Denmark (the Hi-Lili Hi-Lo Company and the Kristin Lomholt Quintet) and had her debut album recorded for Music Mecca records too. Her grip on the traditional material on this album is remarkable and shows great love and understanding of the idiom. Her approach is completely original and fullof imagination.
Now lets have a look at the program they present you here.
The opener Ciribiribin is an old (1911) popular Italian song that became popular too in the United States by several recorded instrumental versions, one of the best known being that by Harry James; it eventually became his theme song. We, in the world of New Orleans music, know it from the renditions by the likes of Kid Thomas, George Lewis, Emile Barnes and Billie and DeDe Pierce, to name just a few. Norbert is clearly paying homage to DeDe here. When he was working in New Orleans with Sadie Goodson, Billie Pierces older sister, it often sounded like Billie and DeDe had returned to earth! Notice the softly played ensemble chorus, just before the final one. This is a quality only true New Orleans bands have. Imagine you can hear the shuffling of the dancers feet on the floor.
On A Coconut Island was recorded by Louis Armstrong in 1936 with His Polynesians, one of the Polynesians being Lionel Hampton on drums! Kid Thomas used to play this too. It is taken here at a relaxed tempo. Norbert sings it and plays a beautiful muted solo. Great low register clarinet with comments from the trombone. Stefan uses his bow to great effect.
Everybody in New Orleans, from Steve Angrum and Paul Barbarin to Tom Valentine and Michael White, must have played and recorded Shake It And Break It, a twin brother to Weary Blues. Everybody is featured on this one, including the bass and the drums. A real swinger! Norbert takes the vocal again.
In The Garden brings Kristin Lomholt to the fore. Her delicate, clear voice renders full justice to this lovely hymn in 3/4 time, written by Austin Miles in 1912. According to a poll by the Christian Herald in the early 1980s, In The Garden was the third most popular protestant hymn following The Old Rugged Cross and What A Friend We Have In Jesus. Elvis Presley sang a beautiful version of it. It was recorded in New Orleans style before by a.o. Sammy Rimington and by the great Australian gospel and blues singer Lee Gunness. Norbert plays flugelhorn here and his duet with Kristin is a thing of real beauty.
My Little Girl (1915) is played at a lively tempo. After a lovely duet by clarinet and trombone, theres an ensemble chorus led by the trumpet, followed by some stomping piano by Göran and a slapped bass solo by Stefan. Two ensemble choruses, again one soft and one loud finish this great swinging performance.
The origin of Eh La Bas is uncertain. DeDe Pierce told an interviewer that he picked it up from a Creole musician in Southeast Louisana, near Lake Charles and added himself lyrics to it through the years. New Orleans Delight plays it with a Latin beat. Norbert sings the lyrics in Louisiana French patois and treats us to some great variations on the theme with his trumpet.
In The Sweet By And By dates from 1868, music by Joseph Webster, words by Sanford Bennett. I read somewhere that this beautiful hymn was born over a brief conversation between these two men one day. Within the space of half an hour, this song was written. Kristin sings it excellently, slowly building up to an exciting climax. Norbert plays flugelhorn again
Love Songs Of The Nile was sung for the first time in 1933 by Ramon Novarra in the musical The Barbarians. I cant tell you how it arrived in New Orleans, but I do know that it became one of the most requested items in the repertory of Billie and DeDe Pierce. Theres some marvellous duet playing by Kjeld, in the low register, and Bengt. Norbert again pays homage to DeDe including his famous 12th Street Rag quote at the end.
Someday Youll Want Me To Want You dates from 1940 and we all know that it was one of the tunes chosen by Bunk Johnson for what was going to be his last recording session.
He Touched Me is another lovely hymn in 3/4 time. Kjeld introduces the melody with delicate comments from Bengt, Stefan uses his bow and Kristin sings her heart out. Bengts solo is a gem.
On Treasure Island from 1935 was recorded by Satchmo, by Tommy Dorsey, Bob Crosby and Henry Red Allen, to name just a few. Its a nice tune with a zest of what Morton called the Spanish tinge in the bridge. Göran makes good use of it in his solo.
With Milk Cow Blues we enter Kid Thomas territory. He made this blues by Kokomo Arnold (1934) one of his specials. As expected, Norbert plays some great Kid Thomas stuff on this one, including the bursts of sound into the metal derby. His vocal is a superb imitation of Toms!
On Paul Barbarins Second Line Claus demonstrates how well he mastered the New Orleans parade beat. After the fine clarinet/trombone duet Norbert plays a fascinating solo accompanied by the drums only. A real tour de force!
Bengt plays the first chorus of Moonlight And Roses (1925 based on Adantino in D flat by the British organist Edwin H. Lemare) as a slow waltz. Lovely! He starts to swing it gently in the second chorus and is joined by Kjelds clarinet. Bengts solo, later on, is beautifully romantic. What a lovely sound!
This CD ends in a most joyful way with Will The Circle Be Unbroken (composed in 1907 and also known in New Orleans as Glory, Glory, Hallelujah) The tempo is fast, the playing and singing (Kristin again) exuberant. Bill Russell once called the version of Ice Cream he recorded in 1944 with Jim Robinson and George Lewis a miracle of uninhibited joy. I would use the same words to describe this exciting version of this old hymn. Another way to describe it would be a celebration of life by music.
One night, years ago, I was standing at the corner of Bourbon and St.Anne. with Allan Jaffe. We were talking about the future of Preservation Hall. I asked him what would happen if there was nobody left in New Orleans playing the old music. Well Allan said I could invite the New Orleans Rascals from Japan for a couple of months, to teach this music again. In my opinion New Orleans Delight would do the job just as well!
Artist: New Orleans Delight
Album: My Little Girl
Review by: Brian Harvey
New Orleans Delight are an unusual band in that they play a superbly authentic style of New Orleans jazz but are from Scandinavia! Just what chemistry they use to achieve this feat is a mystery - but there's no doubt that they have one of the most pleasingly authentic sounds around - a sound that would be just as at home in the French Quarter as it is in Copenhagen or Stockholm. Don't necessarily take my word for it??..that's what the highly respected critic and historian Marcel Joly said of them recently.
The band combines the heat and excitement of out-and-out Dixieland with the unique African and Spanish cross-rhythms and subtle changes of dynamics that make New Orleans jazz unique. In other words - within their idiom they're superb. On this CD from which we play the track Shake It & Break
It in our second "Trad" radio programme they're joined by the very fine trumpet of Norbert Susemihl and the excellent swinging vocals of the beautiful Kristin Lomholt. They turn what was already a band to sit up and take notice of into a classic one. It swings, it's exciting, it has wonderfully subtle dynamic and the choice of songs is superbly different. There are no hackneyed old jazz 'warhorses' here - just unusual songs like Moonlight And Roses, On Treasure Island and Will The Circle Be Unbroken which are refreshingly new to the jazz canon.
Featured Artist: New Orleans Delight Featuring Kristin Lomholt
CD Title: My Little Girl
Record Label: Music Mecca
Style: Traditional Jazz
Musicians: Kjeld Brandt (clarinet / leader); Bengt Hansson (trombone); Göran Magnusson (piano); Erling Lindhardt (banjo); Stefan Kärfve (bass); Claus Lindhardt (drums) and featured guests: Kristin Lomholt (vocals); Norbert Susemihl (trumpet / vocals).
Review: Heres another CD by that fine band from Copenhagen. If you read my previous review, youll already know that New Orleans Delight does not have a regular trumpet player. Instead, they reserve the trumpet chair for visiting performers and an upcoming tour will feature the Canadians, trumpeter Cliff Kid Bastien and reedman George Berry. The tour will begin in Sweden on November 21 ending in Denmark on December 3rd. Full info appears on the bands website.
The featured guests on this CD are hornman Norbert Susemihl of Germany and the young Danish vocalist, Kristin Lomholt. Ms. Lomholt has a crystal clear voice and was trained at the New England Conservatory of Music in the USA. She worked in the US with Charlie Haden and other mainstream players. Kristin now leads her own jazz quintet in Denmark. This release features the young singer on four tracks. I especially liked her bouncy attack on the gospel gem, In The Sweet Bye And Bye and the rocking Will The Circle Be Unbroken.
Norbert Susemihl is a fine trumpeter with a sincere devotion to New Orleans music. There are definite echoes of De De Pierce in his playing. The bands version of the De De and Billie Pierce classic, Love Song of the Nile rivals any version Ive heard. Susemihl is also heard as a vocalist on five tracks including Paul Barbarins Second Line March and Kokomo Arnolds Milk Cow Blues.
Leader, Kjeld Brandt doesnt allow his obvious admiration of George Lewis to inhibit his own creativity. Kjeld shows his versatility on every track but especially on On a Coconut Island and the title track, My Little Girl. The rhythm section is rock steady and sounds like they were born in Preservation Hall.
New Orleans Jazz seems to be alive and well in Copenhagen.
Reviewed by: Richard Bourcier
CD REVIEW by Bert Thompson
South Bay Beat. September 2002,
South Bay Traditional Jazz Society, California, USA
NEW ORLEANS DELIGHT - GO TO NEW ORLEANS,
featuring Derek Winters on trumpet
Mecca Music CD 3086-2). Playing time: 63m 22s.
If These Lips Could Only Speak; Maria Elena; Sporting Life Blues; Oh, You Beautiful Doll; My Gal Sal; Go to New Orleans; In the Upper Garden; If I Had My Way; Don't Leave Me Now; All I Do Is Dream of You; Fly Away; What Am I Living For?; Move the Body Over; Can I Sleep in Your Arms Tonight, Lady?
This CD, recorded in January of this year, is the sixth issued by New Orleans Delight, a Denmark-based sextet that plays in the uptown New Orleans style. The leader, Kjeld Brandt on clarinet, and two of the sidemen, Erling Lindhardt on banjo and Claus Lindhardt on drums, are Danes. The other three members, Bengt Hansson on trombone, Göran Magnusson on piano, and Stefan Kärfve on bass, are Swedes. Each year New Orleans Delight invites musicians from the U.K., Europe, and/or North America to join them for a tour and, usually, a recording, most often at least one of the invitees being a horn player since the group does not have a permanent a horn player. Last year that lot fell to Derek Winters, a trumpet player who needs no introduction to the readers of this magazine, and he is featured on this recording. (This year, 2002, Cliff "Kid" Bastien, born in London and for the last 45 years or so living in Toronto, Canada, will be one of the guests on trumpet, the other being George Berry, who hails from Dartford, on reeds; next year on trumpet it will be Chris Tyle, who has just moved from New Orleans back to Portland, Oregon.)
We get a sense of what the band sounds like in its regular format with the opening of the first number, If These Lips Could Only Speak, as the first time through the lead is taken by Kjeld Brandt on clarinet, trumpet not joining in until the second chorus. But when Derek Winters comes in, the band settles right into a groove which they maintain through the rest of the proceedings. He must have felt very comfortable since the band members listen attentively to each other, no one musician trying to upstage or outblow any other. Thus he gets very fine backing against which he could undoubtedly relax, and all of the group pay attention to dynamics, bringing out subtleties in the renditions.
Winters is featured on both horn and vocals, singing on a half dozen numbers. I am not normally enamored of vocals taken by band members since while on a gig the odd vocal by a band member can go down well enough with the punters because it is a fleeting thing, but when it is preserved on a CD all too often it does not bear repeated listening. Such is not the case with the vocals on this disc. Winters voice is pleasant, he sings on key, and he does not, mercifully, try to imitate an American accent. All of that is quite refreshing.
Another welcome feature is that the selection of tunes is variedpop tunes, a little latin here and there, the odd hymn, and no overworked war horses, just as was the case in New Orleans bands' repertoires of several decades ago. In addition, the tempos are all well chosensome a little surprising, but they work. For instance, My Gal Sal is very laid back, and Move the Body Over is not taken at the break-neck speed it so often is. If I had any nit to pick, it would be with selecting Willie Nelson's lyrics, which do little for me, for the last number, Can I Sleep in Your Arms Tonight, Lady? better known in classic jazz circles as We Shall Walk through the Streets of the City, but I am sure there will be those who will disagree. I'll say no more about the play list since Marcel Joly, who wrote the liner notes, gives an adequate run-down on each of the selections.
As I said earlier, the band are careful listeners, and not just to each other. They have obviously listened to a great many New Orleans recordings and have mastered the style. For me, another drummer, it is such a pleasure to hear good pressed rolls and judicious use of the cymbals by New Orleans Delight's drummer, Claus Lindhardt, who can be heard but does not dominate. (I don't subscribe to the "felt-not-heard" credo: every musician should be "heard," which is not the same thing as "dominate.") His time-keeping is also impeccableaided by his father on banjo, the pair gently reign in the soloist who occasionally gets carried away.
Those in the U.K. and in Europe are fortunate in having so many bands that essay the New Orleans style. Here in the U.S. it is becoming something of a rara avis. Even in New Orleans itself it is becoming harder, almost by the day, to find: Sweet Kathleen's on Decatur has closed, the Can-Can on Bourbon St. likewise, and the rumor is that Fritzel's has been sold. With the disappearance of each location, all too often the band seems to disappear with it. So bands such as New Orleans Delight are becoming crucial to preserving the species. By this point you will have surmised, I'm sure, that I heartily recommend this CD. If you have trouble locating it, Mecca Music CD's are available on-line at either of the following internet websites: www.cdjazz.com (e-mail [email protected]) or www.jazznblues.co.uk (email [email protected]).
Bert Thompson plays drums with the Jelly Roll Jazz Band, the Zenith New Orleans Parade Band, two San Francisco area bands, and Gremoli, a Southern California band.
Review in American Rag
Kritikeren Art C. Stone i The American Rag March 2002
New Orleans Delight: My Little Girl
Music Mecca CD 3061-2
When I reviewed a CD by this band from Denmark last July, I summed it up by saying, This is an interesting CD ... that will be appreciated by those who enjoy the Uptown New Orleans style. In retrospect that may not have been a strong enough recommendation.
There have been a couple of personnel changes since then ... the trombone, piano and bass players are new and vocalist Kristin Lomholt has been added ... but, if anything, the band sounds better than it did nine month ago.
Once again they play a lot of seldom heard tunes; tunes that might well have been on the play list of any N.O. band working a dance gig, a few years ago. Ciribiribin, for example, isnt the bravura performance of Harry James, it is played at a swinging dance tempo more in keeping with the way De De Pierce might have played it.
The musicians have obviously listened to the records. (Susemihl, in fact, oft6en visits and plays along side his heroes in New Orleans.) But this isnt just an imitation of what theyve heard. Theyve absorbed the style and play it as wello as (or better than) anyone youll hear at Preservation Hall today.
Geoff Boxells CD-reviews, New Zealand
New Orleans Delight: My Little Girl
CD 3061-2 Music Mecca 2001, 15 tracks 72 minutes
What a delight it is to play 'My Little Girl' by New Orleans Delight! Having heard them on the Sorgenfri Kirke CDs I felt a desire to have more material by this Scandinavian band. Their normal front line is trumpetless and this allows them to have guest players, on this occasion Norbert Susemihl of Germany. Now, without trumpet Delight split lead between Kjeld Brandt on clarinet and Bengt Hansson on trombone and do so with consummate skill. Put in a trumpet and they change their style so seamlessly that you would never guess that they normally play without one. You may ask how they manage with having different horn players guesting with them as each player has their own style. The answer is that whoever is with them is accommodated and assimilated and the style changes slightly but still within the New Orleans idiom and still distinctly New Orleans Delight.
As I said earlier, the guest horn player on this CD is Norbert Susemihl. Norbert has spent much time in New Orleans soaking up the music and playing with the bands there in all the styles in the new Orleans fold up to and including the Algiers Brass Band an all black outfit (and I ain't talking Kiwi rugby players here). In addition to trumpet, Norbert plays the flugelhorn when backing Delight's other guest, the magical Danish gospel singer, Kristin Lombolt. Her singing of ' In The Garden' and ' He Touched Me' haunt my mind. Kristin's singing and the Delight's sensitive backing, pure magic.
In years past the torch of purist New Orleans jazz passed from its black originators to white Americans. Just as it was starting to slip, the Brits picked it up. More and more these days it is the bands from Scandinavia that bear the torch and New Orleans Delight is one of Scandinavia's best.
Buy and enjoy!
The Jazz Gazette August/September 2002:
New Orleans Delight featuring
Kristin Lomholt & Norbert Susemihl
My Little Girl
Norbert Susemihl (tpt, flhrn & vcl) Bengt Hansson (tbn) Kjeld Brandt (clt) Göran Magnusson (pno) Erling Lindhardt (bjo) Stefan Kärfve (bs) Claus Lindhardt (dms) Kristin Lomholt (vcl)
Woodhouse Recording Studio, April 8, 2001
1. Ciribiribin 2. On A Coconut Island 3. Shake It And Break It 4. In The Garden 5. My Little Girl 6. Eh La Bas 7. In The Sweet By And By 8. Love Song Of The Nile 9. Someday You'll Want Me To Want You 10. He Touched Me 11. On Treasure Island 12. Milk Cow Blues 13. Second Line March 14. Moonlight And Roses 15. Will The Circle Be Unbroken
Music Mecca CD 3061-2
I have known Norbert Susemihl from way back in the Seventies, when we first met in New Orleans, and later over here in Europe when he toured with Papa Tom's Lamentation band, including a young Thomas l'Etienne. We even played some parades together in New Orleans. I always liked his dedicated playing. In his playing you can hear the influences he underwent playing with and listening to a lot of old time musicians. Something you can hear in his DeDe Pierce and Kid Thomas imitations on this CD, but also the influence of the younger, present day New Orleans musicians, which you can hear in 'Second Line'.
Kristin Lomholt is a graduate from the Boston Conservatory of Music, and she has a very nice, clear, trained voice, but I am afraid she is not a jazzsinger.
I think the New Orleans Delight is a very good band and every member thinks in the same direction, relaxed, danceable music. Just listen to the introduction of 'Moonlight and Roses' by Bengt Hansson backed up by Kjeld. You can find a fine exemple of the nice, relaxed New Orleans Delight rhytm on 'Eh La Bas', nice rumba beat, and on 'Second Line', where one could easily think one is in the middle of a parade in New Orleans. One of the best moments of the CD is the intro of 'He Touched Me' where Kjeld and Bengt play beautiful together. I would love the hear a recording by the band without a (guest) trumpet player, playing songs they like, the way they like to play them.
Bemærkninger til "My Little Girl":
Many thanks for this latest and "greatest" yet , jazz music from your wonderful band.I am now, listening to Love Songs of the Nile and it IS indeed, 'Delightful', I heard Billie and DEDE play it many times in the old days of New Orleans as I think you have...You, among only a handful of bands, carrying on the "True" style of the beginners of jazz, have somehow gotten into the "heads" of all those dear, departed old jazz guys down there, and are truthfully DOING their thing in jazz..Most bands DO NOT get it right..New Orleans jazz IS alive as long as you play!!!!
Once again many thanks and much luck to you and the boys, (and the one girl,now), we have to get some reviews over here and have you COME OVER to play for Americans ... They have very little choice of bands doing what you do, and when it is attempted it is usually done badly.
- Richard J. Luker, Ontario, Canada
The CD is excellent, I must congratulate you on producing CD's of such a consistantly high standard.
- Cicely and Peter King, Lincoln, England
La den direkt på, spelade, och njöt. Det är rätt namn, "delight". Tack för all glädje I sprider med New Orleans Delight.
- Bibbi och Jan Hertzman- Ericson, Malmö, Sverige
The new CD is lovely Dave and I have never heard Kristin before and of course are great fans of your New Orleans Delight band and love Norbert Susemihl!
- Leo Thompson, Gnosall Staffs, England
Kors i hytten hvor er det formidabelt flot det den gode Kristin Lomholt synger i He Touched Me. Med lukkede øjne var det næsten som i de gode gamle dage, at høre Lillian Boutté - meget fornemt. Hende glæder jeg mig til at opleve live en dag. Hvornår?
- Ejgil Grønholdt, Præstø
After listening several times to this CD, im glad to say it contains (as your other discs) wonderful music and exellent jazz. New Orleans Delight have a beautiful sound and I appreciate very much that you avoid the old war horses and prefer lesser known tunes.
New Orleans Delight are without a doubt one of the worlds very best contemporary New Orleans bands.
Keep on doing the good work!
- Erwin Elvers, Lütjensee, Tyskland
I enjoyed listening to the CD. The band plays like An Uptown trad band of "unschooled" black muscians of the early days in New Orleans. Correct? ... I haven't heard this in California for years. Probably Kid Ory' band in the early 1950's. I enjoyed the waltz' lilting rhythm. Most bands never play this music.
Kristin adds to your sound. Sweet and true voice. Letting her sing the lead and the band harmonizing softly behind her is great. Some bands tend to bury the singer.
Bill Minech, USA