I want to thank Jeff for holding down the fort. As always, his posts were nothing short of fab.
I need a day to get reacquainted with my surroundings, but in the meantime, have a listen to "Airmail Special," featuring the great Benny Goodman Quartet of Teddy Wilson on piano, Lionel Hampton on vibes, Gene Krupa on drums and Goodman on clarinet, backing up Charlie Christian on guitar.
I've had this song in my head since Sunday evening after seeing Jason Marsalis and his band recreate some of the best performances of this classic 1930's lineup. As Marsalis put it, so many think of Benny Goodman as this commercial lightweight who somehow got christened "The King Of Swing." This is usually based on a handful of big band recordings that became pop standards. But few realize that this particular quartet was not only one of the first (or maybe "the" first) integrated bands of the 30's (which was illegal back then), but was a band that cooked with the best of them.
Marsalis and his band, which featured Joel Goldberg playing Benny's part and Marsails, a drummer, playing Hamp's part on vibes, knocked me out. It's unlikely that this unit will ever make it out of New Orleans, which is unfortunate. But at least you can explore more of the original quartet's recordings, if you dig this.