Various Artists: Dr. Boogie Presents Heavy Jelly: Essential Instrumentals

Various Artists
Dr. Boogie Presents Heavy Jelly: Essential Instrumentals
Sub Rosa

There is no shortage of swing on this instance of vault-digging by Dr. Boogie, aka roots musicologist Walter De Paduwa. Dr. B. is curator of an ongoing series of outstanding salvages of rare rockabilly and blues, including select items from the coveted 78 stash of deceased Canned Heat frontman Bob Hite. This latest prescription is a potent array of 20 R&B instrumentals from the ’50s and early ’60s. Honking, bar-walking saxes and greasy B-3 organ foreplay are front and center on these recordings, and the ghostly fug of sultry roadhouses and blue light basements clings to every track. Its totality makes for a consistent patch of jumping jive, with more than a few standouts: the surprising proto-ska of Baby Earl and the Trinidads’ “Backslop”, for example. David Rockingham Trio’s “Bee Dee” and the Mark III Trio’s “Good Grease” respectively bring the McGriffian, Hammond-driven hip check and yowling, clapping revelry. Roosevelt Fountain’s “Red Pepper, Pt. 2” proves one can never go wrong with a bluesy stroll, complete with a command for dancers to “freeze!” Worshipers at the altar of Selmer will also find suitable cause for ecstasy here, with the inclusion of a rare cut by sax legend Big Jay McNeely.

RATING 8 / 10