martes, 14 de julio de 2009
Annisteen Allen - Fujiyama Mama (1951-1955)
The lovely Annisteen Allen was discovered by the legendary Louis Jordan, who recommended her to Lucky Millinder, then on the lookout for a top notch, sexy female vocalist. Born as Ernestine Allen, this jazz-tinged blues singer began recording in 1945 and went on to record such songs as ‘Miss Allen's Blues’ and ‘Love for Sale’ as Annisteen Allen. She went solo in the early ‘50s after scoring mega national chart hits with Lucky's band, included on Lucky Millinder ‘Let It Roll Again!’, and made some superb R&B sides to rival those of Laverne Baker and Ruth Brown at Atlantic (she was a much better singer than either allegedly!). Annisteen had perhaps her biggest and most notorious hit in 1953 with ‘Baby, I'm Doin' It!’, a risque "answer" record to the Five Royales' ‘Baby Don't Do It’, which made the R&B Top Ten in 1953. That song is here, along with 27 other tracks, all from the early - to mid-'50s. I included as bonus tracks three cuts recorded with Melvin Moore in 1951. Allen's records are emblematic in many ways of both swing jazz's transition to R&B, and R&B's transition to rock & roll. Certainly the earliest sides are as much, or maybe even a bit more, swing than R&B - a logical connection, since Allen had been a singer with Millinder. She found a yet more impressive groove, however, with later sides with more of a funky backbeat, the best of which, the outlandish ‘Fujiyama Mama,’ was famously covered yet more explosively for a rockabilly classic by Wanda Jackson. Chock full of rock 'n' roll club hits, great jump blues, and madly popular with the new swing dance craze, this compilation is a must. Allen delivering the songs with a satisfyingly saucy style and the consistent material here serves as a reminder of how overlooked and underestimated her contributions were. http://www.cherryred.co.uk/, http://www.allmusic.com/. Many thanks to Mike for sharing this!
Annisteen Allen with Lucky Millinder and His Orchestra. 'Bongo Boogie' ~ February 28, 1951: