After an interesting afternoon fixing our new forum (note to self – after installing and setting up a forum, don’t delete it. It stops it working) – back to my first blog post. I thought it might be useful to kick off with a playlist from Saturday night at last weekend’s DJam – it wasn’t a stunning set, by any means (one half hour band break, then picked up again after then next DJ and competitions) – but it was a little unusual in that I needed to effect play an hour of swing from midnight, then transition into blues. And approaching 1am, the floor was jumping, and it almost felt like a crime to obey the timetable.
However, a timetable is a timetable – and I knew that a lot of people were looking forward to the blues section of the evening, so the transition needed to be done. I’m jumping a little ahead of myself here – I’ll skip back to the playlist itself.
First Band Break
I was aiming for a fun but relaxing half hour with these first tracks. The band had been playing a variety of speeds, but they’d hit the dancers with some pretty high tempos, and many had eaten only shortly before. So the first couple of tracks were to start slowing things down a bit, and make the less confident dancers feel safe to come back on the floor. After that, a couple of slow playful tracks (Hawk in particular is so much fun, and I love all the subtle intricacies of Moon Faced)
Then more of a gentle build up, with more gentle quirky fun from Mr Boogie Man and Spooks, and getting the energy going a bit more with Whatcha Know… and back to the band.
|Love Me Or Leave Me||02:45||161||Pat Flowers|
|Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen||05:16||151||Gordon Webster|
|Moon-Faced, Starry-Eyed||03:07||129||Benny Goodman|
|Mr Boogie Man||03:03||143||Wingy Manone|
|Whatcha Know Joe||03:26||163||Tommy Dorsey & Jo Stafford|
This next chunk began at midnight, post-competitions. I was mostly having fun here – albeit being slightly lazy and playing personal favourites. I feel I can get away with this more when playing to an unfamiliar crowd. In The Mood… was perhaps a mis-step. It’s an incredible version, but it doesn’t always work … and while it wasn’t a disaster, this wasn’t the best response I’ve had from it. Although the best responses usually involve death threats. If you’ve danced to it, you’ll know why.
The Goon Drag was a nice safe recovery track.
A request for a Shim Sham was honoured, although my timing could have been better – it messed with the wave a little. I was left with a problem here though, because the room was becoming nicely energised, and it was fast approaching 1am (blues time) – so I tried an experiment, which was to begin by cranking the energy up, not down. Rex’s St Louis Blues is an insane, manic track, which begins as it’s title suggests, but quickly runs through the best parts of various other tracks in a crazy fashion, which makes it a good song to peak on. I then dropped it back to a comparatively gentle version of Joshua (minus those horrific fanfares, for those familiar with the original), then started down the quirky and progressively slower route. Two Woody Allen songs in quick succession was probably a no-no, but it seemed to work. Di Anne Price’s wonderful piano started the blues set proper.
|Its Tight Like That||02:47||143||Jimmy Noone|
|Lavender Coffin||02:21||145||Joe Thomas|
|Jungle Crawl (1)||02:57||153||Clarence Williams & His Orchestra|
|Leap Frog||02:58||158||Louis Armstrong|
|Study In Red||03:15||166||Larry Clinton|
|In The Mood||04:39||175||Gene Krupa & His Orchestra|
|The Goon Drag (Gone Wid De Goon)||03:08||142||Sammy Price And His Texas Blusicians|
|Your Feets Too Big||03:06||121||Fats Waller & His Rhythm|
|All for You||02:50||122||Imelda May|
|Gimme A Pigfoot||03:09||120||LaVern Baker|
|T’Ain’t What You Do||03:07||160||Jimmie Lunceford|
|Make Me Know It||03:59||146||Tommy Dorsey|
|Get Up||02:50||148||Skeets Tolbert and His Gentlemen Of Swing|
|Long Gone||02:38||160||Ray McKinley|
|St. Louis Blues||03:11||188||Rex Stewart|
|Joshua (Straycat Edit)||02:44||134||Ralph Flanagan & His Orchestra|
|Shake That Thing||03:32||127||Woody Allen|
|New Orleans Bump||03:32||120||Jelly Roll Morton|
|Hear Me Talkin’ To Ya||05:32||94||Woody Allen|
|Big Fat Mama (1)||02:48||92||Clarence Williams & His Orchestra|
|Why Don’t You Do Right||04:16||79||Di Anne Price|
|I Pity the Fool||02:43||76||Bobby Blue Bland|
|Give Me One Reason||05:29||93||Earl Thomas|
|Nobody’s Fault But Mine||02:11||125||Eric Bibb|
|W-O-M-A-N – Etta James||02:43||79||Etta James|
|Rock Me Baby||06:16||66||Big Mama Thornton|
|Wade In the Water||03:01||99||Michelle Shocked|
|I Am the Cool||04:17||104||Screamin’ Jay Hawkins|
|My Discarded Men||03:42||111||Eartha Kitt|
|It’s a Man’s Man’s Man’s World||03:53||55||Seal|
|Come On In My Kitchen||05:53||78||Porterdavis|
|Night Train||03:06||83||Buddy Morrow|
|Right and Wrong||04:58||71||Asylum Street Spankers|
|I Just Wanna Make Love to You||04:10||71||Louise Hoffsten|
|Step by Step||05:22||53||L. A. Blues Alliance|
This was a fairly standard blues set for me. Maybe a little too standard, but I can never resist playing that version of Wade in the Water – a habit I really should break myself of) I was a little worried people might start to drift off during the set, but that didn’t happen. Finished up at around 2:15am, then danced ’till five.
It was a good evening.