Sunday, April 29, 2012
A Jazz Romance
Yesterday I was poking around a Salvation Army up in Binghamton, NY, and I came across a curiosity. It was a Joe Marsala record on another of those budget, semi-legit here-and-gone labels. Now, normally I don't pay much attention to product of that sort, and Marsala's Dixie-oriented stuff never did much for me, but this record had two redeeming facets. One was the presence of ex-Ellington cornetist Rex Stewart. The other was harpist Adele Girard. Harp on a traditional jazz record? This I had to hear.
Here's a charming history of the Marsalas written by Adele herself (dictated only a few months before her death in 1993):
And here's a Soundie jukebox clip of Adele Girard, made around the time of the photo above, doing "Harp Boogie" with an unknown bassist and guitarist. As you can see, Adele was easy to look at and swings mightily. The dancer hasn't got very good rhythm, but I guess that wasn't what the boozy jukebox customers were interested in anyway.