Tuesday, January 20, 2015

94 year-old Jazz Ballad Keeps New Generations Grooving


Good Day World!

My taste in music is eclectic, but if I had to pick a favorite style/type, jazz would get the nod.

Like all good music, jazz tells a story and stands the test of time. 

The following jazz standard is an excellent example of the genre:

"Right or Wrong" is a jazz ballad from 1921.

It was composed by Arthur Sizemore and Paul Biese, with words by Haven Gillespie. The piece, described by the original sheet music as "a beautiful fox-trot ballad," deals with a universal theme.

The lyrics tell of the loss of a paramour.

The title comes from a refrain in the chorus:

Right or wrong, I'll always love you.
Tho' you're gone, I can't forget.
Right or wrong, I'll keep on dreaming,
Tho' I wake with that same old regret.
All along I knew I'd lose you,
Still I pray'd that you'd be true.
In your heart, please just remember,
Right or wrong, I'm still in love with you.

The biggest hit for "Right or Wrong" came in 1984, when George Strait recorded the old Bob Wills song for his best-selling album of the same name (See Right or Wrong).

The single from that album (MCA 52337) reached #1, staying on the charts for 12 weeks.

"Right or Wrong" was recorded by many early jazz and swing orchestras, including; Mike Markel and His Orchestra (OKeh 4478, 1921), Original Dixie Jazz Band(Oriole 445, 1925), Peggy English (Brunswick 3949, 1928), Tampa Red (Bluebird 6832, 1936), and Mildred Bailey and Her Orchestra (Vocalion 3758, 1937).

The recording with the longest lasting influence would be the one by the black-faced Emmett Miller and the Georgia Crackers (OKeh 41280, 1929).

Miller's version was picked up by an early Bob Wills and became a standard Western swing dance tune. Both Wills (Vocalion 03451, 1936) and Milton Brown(Decca 5342, 1936) made early recordings.

Western swing versions generally do not include any of the verses, only repetitions of the chorus. The song also appears on Leon Redbone's 1990 album Sugar. (Source-Wikipedia)

Time for me to walk on down the road…

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