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Joe Mares' - Acetates Vol. 1 [BCD-522] CD Review by Scott Yanow

Date Posted: 2012-04-08

In the 1950s, producer Joe Mares (the younger brother of cornetist Paul Mares) ran the Southland label. He concentrated on recording traditional New Orleans jazz by the Crescent City's musicians in their hometown. Unlike many of the Preservation Hall-type musicians in the 1960s, the players recorded by Southland were always in-tune, technically skilled, and quite adept at the dixieland standards. George Buck's GHB and Jazzology label has reissued virtually the entire catalog on 27 CDs.

Joe Mares' Acetates is an extra added bonus. These 17 selections were recorded by Mares mostly before he started Southland, and they were for his own personal use. None of the music was previously released yet the recording quality of the acetates ranks as high as studio records of the time.

Featured are trumpeters Sharkey Bonano (who is on nine numbers), Tony Delmado, George Hartman, Mike Lala and Johnny Wiggs, clarinetists Irving Fazola (on his last performances), Harry Shields, Raymond Burke and Bujie Centobie, trombonists Emile Christian, Julian Laine and Jack Delaney plus several spirited rhythm sections. The music, dating from 1948-53, is strictly from dixie but played with enthusiasm and solid musicianship. These musicians really lived the music and it shows.

Joe Mares' Acetates is a consistent delight and available from www.jazzology.com.

- Scott Yanow

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