I think it’s about time I featured a Cab Calloway record, so here it is, one of his earliest records, as well as one of his best. At such an early recording date, Calloway’s band retained the most of the members, and hot sound of their predecessor, the Missourians.
Melotone M 12639, originally issued as Brunswick 6020, was recorded on December 23, 1930 in New York, two days before Cab’s birthday, in New York City, this Melotone was issued around early to mid 1933. These sides feature Cab singing and directing the band, and includes R.Q. Dickerson, Lammar Wright, and Reuben “River” Reeves on trumpets, De Priest Wheeler and Harry White on trombones, William Thornton Blue on clarinet and alto sax, Andrew Brown on bass clarinet and tenor sax, Walter “Foots” Thomas on alto, tenor and baritone saxes, Earres Prince on piano, Morris White on banjo, Jimmy Smith on bass, and Leroy Maxey on drums.
The band’s energetic performance of the evergreen classic “Some of These Days” is one of Cab’s hottest tunes ever recorded, with the (ex-)Missourians playing as hot as ever. This side has a few small needle digs that cause slight disruption near the end, please try to excuse them.
Maceo Pinkard’s “Is That Religion” is performed in the form of a mock-sacred song, with a chorus singing in the background, and Cab preaching.