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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

STARS OF JAZZ - MARCH 18, 1957 - SHOW #37

T. Riley and the Saints enjoyed a long standing engagement at the Hermosa Inn in Hermosa Beach. They billed themselves as "Cool Figs" as opposed to traditional Dixieland groups that were referred to as "Mouldy Figs" by combos that played jazz labelled as "modern." The Saints instrumentation lacked some of the traditional instruments that were associated with Dixieland jazz, no tuba and no banjo. The lead horn played by Chico Alvarez was a trumpet, once again not the traditional cornet found in Dixieland groups. They played traditional Dixieland numbers with arrangements that were not typical of the traditional style heard in Dixieland groups.  Although their long run at the Hermosa Inn must have pleased patrons and kept the "house full" there is no record of them having entered a studio or recording the group live at the Hermosa Inn. 

The featured vocalist on this program had gained fame as a singer who could mimic any vocalist who happened to have a hit on the Billboard charts.  One day she might sing a Jo Stafford hit and the next day a Mary Ford tune that had topped the charts.

One of the companies that specialized in making "covers" of current Billboard hits was Broadway Records. They would package two hits on a single 78 record and sell the "cover" for considerably less than you would pay for a copy of the original hit on Capitol or Decca or RCA Victor.

Nora Evans had decided to strike out of her own when she appeared on Stars of Jazz and Billboard carried a notice around this time that she had signed with Rave Records. 

Today Ms. Evans is best known for the album that she released on her own label, Noreva Records.

SHOW #37
MARCH 18, 1957
Tom Riley and the Saints: Chico Alvarez, trumpet; Wayne Sherman, trombone; James Gray, clarinet; Norman Pizzuti, piano; Monford Gibbs, acoustic double bass; Tom Riley, drums. Nora Evans, vocal.

Ms. Evans was backed by Norm Pizzuti on her numbers, and he received double scale, paid separately by A.B.C.

Production credits for this show:

Host: Bobby Troup
Producer: Jimmie Baker
Writer: Robert Arbogast
Director: "Hap" Leo G. Weyman
Audio: Chuck Lewis
Cameramen: Jack Denton, Sal Folino
Technical Director: Gene Lukowski
Lighting Director: Vince Cilurzo
Video: George Hillas

Bobby Troup played regular gigs around Los Angeles while he was MC on Stars of Jazz. The Keynoter was one of his regular haunts.

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