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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars TOO HOT FOR THE SAVOY, 15 Aug 2007
By 
Barry McCanna (Normandy, France) - See all my reviews
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I have to confess to a certain reservation regarding Fred Elizalde's Savoy recordings. On the one hand, his contract was not renewed, allegedly because he refused to tone down his performances to suit the patrons of that establishment. On the other hand, he recorded such limpid tunes as Diane, Chopinata, and Roam On, My Little Gypsy Sweetheart. None of which feature here, mercifully. Instead we get such standards as Tiger Rag, Sugar, My Pet, and Nobody's Sweetheart, many of which feature that giant of the bass saxophone Adrian Rollini, who could manipulate that mammoth of an instrument like few others. I assume that the Trumbauer-influenced saxophonist is Bobby Davis, and mention should be made of the presence on the later sides of Mario Lorenzi, who recorded the first hot harp solo with Jay Whidden (predating Caspar Reardon by some years). The other item of interest is the later joining of guitarist Al Bowlly, who contributes four vocals, including the ultra-rare Metropole recording of "After The Sun Kissed The World Goodbye".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars London in the Roaring Twenties., 2 Nov 2011
By 
J. Gibbons (London, UK) - See all my reviews
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Fred Elizalde lead a wonderful dance band at the Savoy Hotel in London in the late 1920's. He employed some of the best local musicians available and added some of the finest players from that crack American band - The California Ramblers. These latter, including Bobby Davis, Chelsea Quealy, and Adrian Rollini, were, of course, important figures in the New York 'hot music' scene and had played and recorded with the likes of Bix Beiderbecke, Red Nichols, Joe Venuti and Eddie Lang.

The young English players, who included that fine trumpet player Norman Payne, loved working in the group and learnt an enormous amount from their trans-atlantic confreres. For the young Harry Hayes - whose first major job this was - the thrill of playing in the same section as Rollini and Davis was something, as he told me, he never forgot.

This anthology of the best recordings Elizalde made for Vocalion in 1928 and 1929 forms a first class introduction to the work of this pioneering group. There is a mixture of 'hot' numbers played by a small group made-up of an American front line and an English rhythm section - Rollini's baritione sax is outstanding - and more conventional dance numbers played by the full band. As a bonus, the young Al Bowlly joins the group for some of the later tracks. As ever, his vocals are first class.

These records were a major milestone in the early development of British jazz and, as such, are of enormous historical importance. However, as well as this, they are thoroughly enjoyable in their own right and this CD, excellently remastered by John R T Davis, is highly recommended. A splendid issue.
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The Best of Fred Elizalde and his Anglo American Band 1928-1929
The Best of Fred Elizalde and his Anglo American Band 1928-1929 by Fred Elizalde And His Anglo American Band
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