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King of Boogie Woogie (1939-1949) *


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Performer Notes
  • Personnel: Albert Ammons (piano); Jack Cooley (vocals, drums); Ike Perkins, Lonnie Johnson (guitar); Artie Starks (clarinet); Riley Hampton (alto saxophone); Gene Ammons (tenor saxophone); Meade "Lux" Lewis (piano); Armand Jump Jackson, Alvin Burroughs (drums).
  • Recording information: Chicago, IL (01/06/1939-01/04/1949); New York, NY (01/06/1939-01/04/1949).
  • If it's the music you're after and not some extended liner note essay to accompany the sounds, this double-disc budget comp of the work of stride piano innovator Albert Ammons is a nice bet. There are 37 cuts spread out over the years 1939 -1949 showcasing the great barrelhouse piano boss in the company of Meade "Lux" Lewis, saxophonist Gene Ammons, guitarist Lonnie Johnson, Jump Jackson, and Ike Perkins, to name just a few. Virtually all of the Ammons classics are here, from the four-handed duets with Lewis such as "Twos and Fews," "The Boogie Woogie Stomp," some solo work, like "Deep in the Heart of Texas Boogie," to more band-oriented work such as his read of George Gershwin's "Oh Lady Be Good," that probably made the poor composer turn green in his grave. The sound is fine for what it is, but the music is a pure joy and a breathtakingly vulgar American blues stomp. ~ Thom Jurek
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