Smoking Time Jazz Club – Make A Tadpole Holler Whale (2016)

Smoking Time Jazz Club - Make A Tadpole Holler Whale (2016)
Artist: Smoking Time Jazz Club
Album: Make A Tadpole Holler Whale
Genre: New Orleans Jazz / Retro Swing
Origin: USA
Released: 2016
Quality: mp3, 320 kbps
Do It Mr. Soso 03:50
Maple Leaf Rag 03:46
Fare Thee Honey Blues 03:16
Goodbye Daddy Blues 03:32
Thirty First Street Blues 03:32
Rhumba Negra 02:58
I Lost My Man 03:37
What Do You Care 02:53
Black And Tan Fantasy 03:20
Your Mothers Son In Law 03:15
River Bottom Blues 03:52
Kansas City Breakdown 02:58
Shake A Little Bit (And Drag It) 04:06
The Penguin 02:54


Not that this is hard to do or anything, but if you’re gonna fully appreciate the music of this revolving, transplanted octet of expats, it helps to remember that jazz was the original American party soundtrack—a sound meant for dancing and boozing and whoring, a celebration of life at its wildest and most unfettered. It isn’t that Smoking Time Jazz Club, now on its tenth collection of trad-jazz workouts, tries to be sexy—lead singer and eternal MVP Sarah Peterson can handle the entire Okeh back catalogue of proto-blues mama wailing and moaning—it’s that they don’t seem to be trying at all. Now more than ever, STJC proves that jazz is natural music, the cause of hangovers, not museum funding. Their repertoire, which is as always perfectly balanced between the obvious and the obscure, isn’t just authentic. Authenticity can be studied and learned; this stuff breathes. Sometimes right on the back of your neck.

Their “Maple Leaf Rag,” as far as the obvious department goes, is still instantly recognizable, it’s just passed through the oeuvre of the band’s one overarching mentor, Jelly Roll Morton, to work the stiffness of time out of it. The Club’s arrangements of “Rhumba Negra” and “Kansas City Breakdown” are arresting and immediate, the way you can only get by spending half your time busking and the other half cutting heads. And when Sarah shows up, Ma Rainey’s “Goodbye Daddy Blues” becomes more than just your mom’s favorite Boardwalk Empire episode; Alberta Jones’ “I Lost My Man” is so present in the moment it sounds like it’s busy creating its own regret; and “Your Mother’s Son-In-Law” isn’t just the earliest, winkingest Billie Holiday—it swings the weight of a real plea. Frankly, it all just swings, period, but Smoking Time has spent so much time smoking that if you ain’t hep, you haven’t been in town that long. Remember: If you’re not dancing, it’s not real culture.
by Robert Fontenot