THE J STREET JUMPERS:
Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby
Blues Access said I had to double check to make sure this really wasnt something recorded in the 40s. Vocalist Marianna Previti has nailed that Lil Green-Dinah Washington sound of the era. Fans of the bluesy swing of Louis Jordan, the Liggins brothers, (and) Louis Prima will definitely dig this The Jumpers have been a staple of the vital East Coast swing dance scene for over a decade. They exude the jitterbug beat of Harlem, the LA jump blues of the 50s, and the soulful raunch of NOrleans R&B. Throw in the sultry momma-wouldnt-approve vocals of Marianna. Whatcha got? swaggering horn arrangements, lustful lyrics and a dance-till-dawn swing beat, according to CMJ. 4-Stars from Down Beat. A Bound For Sound Recording of Merit. (#05452)
Charlie Hubel, tenor/bari sax
IF YOU ENJOYED THE J STREET JUMPERS, BE SURE TO CHECK OUT:
The Jumpers is an octet-strength swing unit of solid musicality and musicianship that strikes some heat here with an addictive version of Topsy based on the 1958 Cozy Cole version. Jeff Lodsun handles the rocking drum work with authority. There are also consistently good solos from Don Lerman [tenor and alto] and Steve Shaw [trombone] and fine ensemble blends on Onion. Singer Marianna Previti, heard on most tracks, sings in a light sound reminiscent of Helen Humes. The 40s sensibility extends to Pierre Spreys engineering, which nicely catches the 1949 Mercury studio sound.
Bound for Sound:
Recording of Merit.
The J Street Jumpers could easily be lumped in with modern-day swingers and shufflers like Cherry Poppin' Daddies, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and Squirrel Nut Zippers, but the Washington, DC-based group has actually been on the retro-musical bandwagon for nearly 15 years. This raucous group of nine miscreants stirs up the unmistakable ruckus of an off-the-wall jump band. For instance, bass player Adam Friedman favors the thumping, slapping sound of real gut strings on the bass, a type of equipment choice most players abandoned by the '50s. Fronted by sultry vocals from chanteuse Marianna Previti alternating with Arthur Gerstein's gruff and wiggy Prima-esque jiving, the J Street Jumpers execute a perfect fit with their swaggering horn arrangements, lustful lyrics and dance-till-dawn swing beat.
What you have here is danceable swing, with lustful lyrics and great solos performed by a tight-knit group of nine musicians who are out to have a good time. From the opening "Better Beware", the listener can't help but become mesmerized by the passionate, energetic, Lady-Dayish vocals of Marianna Previti, who does wonderful things with her voice and lyrics. She will steam your glasses with her interpretation of "That's How I Feel About You", move you with "At Last", and give you a good time with "Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean".
Drummer Jeff Lodsun drives the group on a memorable "Topsy", a showcase arrangement for the band. Throughout, there's great sax work from Charlie Hubel, with Don Lerman impressive on clarinet, solid trumpet from Vince McCool, and a great bluesy piano (and vocals, too) from Arthur Gerstein. Put it on and dance 'til dawn.