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These four- and five-piece combos feature dynamic musicians of the Frisco jazz revival who jammed weekly in a Berkeley dive. At the peak of their musical powers were 6' 5" Louisiana-via Paris clarinet player Frank "Big Boy" Goudie, young trombonist Bob Mielke, then leading his own popular Bearcats jazz band, and piano player Bill Erickson, a brilliant but now forgotten talent who led combos and jam sessions.
Their adventurous style and repertoire were more influenced by New Orleans, Harlem and Kansas City swing than by the Trad Jazz of Watters and Murphy. Goudie's masterful Creole clarinet shines luminously, forged by thirty years playing with the jazz elite of Europe, 1925-55.
Volumes Two and Three include a mystery trumpet player rounding out the combo for a New Orleans-style front line. It was probably one Jerry Blumberg who fused the gritty New Orleans horn style of Bunk Johnson with the classy New York sound of Bobby Hackett. In vivid stereo, these are the best performances available by the elusive Goudie, Erickson or Blumberg.
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