Desert Island Jazz
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  • Bob Mielke (2002)

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    A decade before the psychedelic rock bands created `the San Francisco Sound,' the Bay Area was rife with traditional jazz combos who played music rooted in the early New Orleans sound. Lu Watters and Turk Murphy were the most prominent, but here's another, Bob Mielke's Bearcats, which featured banjo baron Dick Oxtot, who later led his sextet at the Point in Point Richmond, as well as the Oakland A's Swingers band. Even before he launched Arhoolie Records, Berkeley's Chris Strachwitz was running around with his tape recorder capturing music he liked. In this case it was the Bearcats septet at the Sail `N in San Francisco in 1958, which he has finally issued. The most amazing aspect isn't that the band is so lively and swinging, but that Strachwitz captured such good fidelity with only one microphone. From `Millenburg Joys' through `Bugle Boy March' this is a romping, stomping album, maybe not a historic breakthrough, but a lot of fun.
    Pick Artist Album Song Label
    # 1 New Orleans Feetwarmers featuring Kid Ory Johnny Dodds, 1926-1928 Gatemouth (JSP)
    # 2 Muggsy Spanier, featuring George Brunies The Great 16 (LP) Livery Stable Blues (RCA)
    # 3 Bunk Johnson, featuring Jim Robinson Bunk Johnson and His Superior Jazz Band Down by the Riverside (Good Time Jazz)
    # 4 Ludwig van Beethoven Claudio Arrau "Eroica Variations", Variations and Fugue in E-flat Major, Op. 35 (Naxos)
    # 5 Louis Armstong, featuring Lawrence Brown Louis in Los Angeles, 1930 (LP) One Hour Tonight (Swaggie)
    # 6 Henry "Red" Allen, featuring J.C. Higginbotham Henry Allen and His New York Orchestra, 1929-30, Vol. 2 Pleasing Paul (JSP)
    # 7 Duke Ellington, featuring Joe "Tricky Sam" Nanton The Blanton-Webster Band Sidewalks of New York (Bluebird)
    # 8 Vic Dickenson The Complete Edmond Hall / James P. Johnson / Sidney de Paris / Vic Dickenson Blue Note Sessions (LP) High Society (Mosaic)
    Book The Encyclopaedia Britannica
    Luxury Item A solar-powered short-wave radio
    Alternate Picks/Not Broadcast
    Alt 1 Bob Mielke's Bearcats The Bearcats Corrine Corrina unreleased as of broadcast date
    Castaways by date
    George Cotsirilos
    09 Feb
    Ed Klitsch
    05 Jan