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Big-T & the Bada-Bings


Fat Daddy Pussycat
Swing 2000; Jumpin' Jivin' Dance Party

You can tell a lot about a band not only by its choice in cover songs but what it does with the arrangements. Anyone with a modicum of musical ability can learn the proper notes and inflections, but it takes a real artist to re-envision a song and make it personal. With the resurgence of swing, several bands have taken a new approach to the cover: The New Morty Show found the Louis Prima in Metallica and do a version of Poison’s “Unskinny Bop” that’s better than any of their originals. Unfortunately, the Swing 2000 compilation proves that just adding a horn section, jazz guitar and Vegas vocals does not a swing song make.


Hear Samples of
Swing 2000

Dancing In The Street

(Requires Windows Media)

The producers at Q Records have compiled a selection of hits from the ‘60s, ‘70s and ‘80s and arranged them as an early-‘50s dance band might.  Although the idea is fun, one can’t help but feel the inspiration for this album came from someone watching a really “swinging” wedding band.   Most of the chosen songs are classic R&B numbers, and since all swing music is in someway related to blues and, thus, R&B, the idea of transposing these tunes into swing seems an exercise in futility. “Pick Up The Pieces,” “Dance To The Music,” and “Gimme Some Lovin’” are already great dance songs without the swing makeover, and the covers pale in comparison the originals. Similarly, if you can’t Lindy to the original “Respect” or “Dancing In The Street,” you need to seriously reconsider your dancing.

The CD almost redeems itself on those songs that aren’t necessarily considered dance floor standards. The arrangements of “I Saw Her Standing There” and The  Boxtops’ “The Letter” are inventive and help them stand up on their own. And I’m not a big Steely Dan fan, so anything you can do to “Do It Again” is an improvement. But by far the best song on the album is Prince’s “1999.” Granted, this is already an R&B flavored dance hit, but it’s new jack, and hearing it brought back to the old school is amusing and gives it new life.

Somewhere in here, there is a much better album waiting to get out. “Hot For Teacher,” “Smells Like Teen Spirit,” “You Oughta Know”? there are a horde of strange and great swing covers just waiting to happen. One can only hope the gang at Q takes note.

- Christian Puffer

Year 1999 Reviews
Year 2000 Reviews
Year 2001 Reviews
Year 2002 Reviews
Year 2003 Reviews
B.B. King—Let The Good Times Roll
Bellevue Cadillac—Take Out Out Takes
The Blue Dahlia—The Blue Dahlia
Bryan Ferry—As Time Goes By
Candye Kane—The Toughest Girl Alive
City Rhythm—Strikes Again
Dave's True Story—Unauthorized
Dmitri Resnik—It Ain't Rocket Science
Duke Ellington—The Essential Collection
Ernie Krivda—The Band That Swings
Etta James—The Chess Box
Fat Daddy Pussycat—Swing 2000
Flying Neutrinos—Hotel Child
George Gee & The Jump Jive and Wailers—Buddha Boogie
Hollywood Swing & Jazz
Hula Joe & The Hutjumpers—
Hula Joe & The Hutjumpers
Jimmy Nations Combo—Tarheel Boogie
Jimmy Vargas—The Tease, The Torch...
Josh Max's Outfit—Make It Snappy
Keely Smith—Swing Swing Swing
Kim Lenz—The One and Only
Midnight Cool—Jazz Classics Collection
Mora's Modern Rhythmists—
Call of the Freaks
Nat King Cole—Golden Years 1943-1946
The Original Band—
Still Rockin' Around The Clock
Peggy Cone—Bad Girl Shoes
Quinn Lemley—Dance or Die!
Red & The Red Hots—Gettin' Around
Red Peters—The Deacon Moves In
Sammy Davis Jr.—Sammy & Friends
Scrappy Hamilton—At Rock Bottom
Tom Maxwell—Samsara
The Slingshots—Feels So Right
  Retro Reading Reviews
Swing Style
Swing It!-The Andrew Sisters Story
1940s Hairstyles

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