Susie Arioli Swing Band – Pennies From Heaven (2002)

Susie Arioli Swing Band - Pennies From Heaven (2002)
Artist: Susie Arioli Swing Band
Album: Pennies From Heaven
Genre: Neo-swing
Origin: Canada
Released: 2002
Quality: mp3, 320 kbps

1. Pennies From Heaven – 3:55
2. Honeysuckle Rose – 2:21
3. Night and Day – 4:53
4. Foolin’ Myself – 3:15
5. Jordan’s Boogie – 2:55
6. Don’t Explain – 5:17
7. I’ll Never Smile Again – 2:55
8. Having Fun – 3:24
9. Sit Down Baby – 3:28
10. Walter’s Flat – 3:00
11. He Needs Me – 3:17
12. Do Nothing ‘Til Yo
13. No Regrets – 2:02


Pennies From Heaven, the Susie Arioli Swing Band’s sophomore release, would prove to be Ralph Sutton’s last recording session. The stride piano master appears on a hushed, haunting “Don’t Explain” and a boogie-woogie romp called “Walter’s Flat,” composed by Arioli’s fabulous guitarist, Jordan Officer, who again gets front-cover billing. Arioli’s vocals are chipper and versatile, taking plainspoken delight in songs by Fats Waller, Duke Ellington, Cole Porter, and more. In a quirky twist, Arioli also serves as the band’s drummer, softly tapping out four with brushes on a snare drum. Officer, bassist Solon McDade (or Colin Bray), and acoustic guitarist Michael Jerome Brown round out the group’s offbeat, minimalistic lineup. Jeff Healey walks on for a Django-esque acoustic solo flight on “Having Fun,” a Memphis Slim tune that one could imagine being sung by Patsy Cline. But the chief attraction is Officer, whose twangy, old-school archtop sound and sparse, witty phrasing suit everything from Nat King Cole-style swing (“No Regrets”) to rockabilly (“Jordan’s Boogie”) to Chicago blues (Otis Rush’s “Sit Down Baby”).
Review by David R. Adler