Recorded by Craig Schumacher at Wavelab, Tucson, AZ April-May 2002 and Kyle Bronsdon at Vitalegacy Records, North Hollywood, CA January-February 2003.
A/D transferring and sax overdub by Mike Houge at Track Record, North Hollywood, CA.
Mixed by Kyle Bronsdon at Vitalegacy Records.
Mastered by Mike Cogan at BayRec Studios, San Francisco, CA.
Brenden Kearney – piano
Steve Grams – bass
Carl Sonny Leyland – piano(4, 7)
Harvey Newmark – bass(4, 7, 10, 12)
Cass Preston – trumpet(1, 9)
George Zissner – clarinet(1)
John Proulx – piano(10, 12)
Billy Kerr – tenor sax(13)
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- 1. The St. Louis Vipers Club
- Louis Armstrong should be canonized, I think. Saints are just people, aren’t they? People do all kinds of strange things, but saints do supernatural things. I wrote this tune with Fletch’s Satchel Mouth Baby in mind.
- 2. Baby, You’re Swingin’ Now
- She really is something else. There are things she’s even better at than dancing, and nothing about her is “easy”. You couldn’t imagine. Well, you might know her. If you do, it’s likely you love her.
- 3. Go Around Back
- An old musician joke I wanted to share in song. It’s funny ’cause it’s true…
- 4. Rag
- Fletcher Henderson inspired this, I think. I don’t usually get up that early, so I don’t remember much.
- 5. The ‘Possom
- True story. You had to be there.
- 6. Satchmo Say
- I play both kinds of music.
- 7. FMC Stomp
- The Future of Music Coalition. If you don’t know, LEARN.
- 8. Jivin’ Man
- I got the first line of the chorus from Johnny Carson. The rest wrote itself.
- 9. Holy Smoke!
- I’ve played a lot with people who have been playing longer than I’ve been alive. It’s humbling, educational and enlightening. A few of them are featured on this album. You can hear Cass jump out of his chair on this track, and it’s in TUNE. The flat seventh, as a matter of fact.
- 10. The Little People
- I don’t feel that God is an anthropod, and the Little People exist in a form somewhere between God and us. I, however, like Jung, don’t believe in God. I know. If you find that weird, you’ll surely find it even weirder that I also acknowledge the existence of these elves, gnomes, fairies, and all things Fay. Of course, everything is a metaphor for direct experience. Maybe the spirit world is really a state of conciousness [sic], a place somewhere around sleep, dreaming, wakefulness, and death. Or maybe it’s the ground of being behind all these places. I don’t really know – I’m just a drummer – But I know what I’ve seen. It’s blown my mind. [Special Feature: Inside the Writing of Kitchen Swing]
- 11. Pop It
- Brenden got us a gig at a steakhouse/martini bar. It sucked. But it paid. We eventually realized that we could get away with “pushing the envelope”. Naturally, we did. We even created this tune, enveloped in cigar smoke and vodka-fueled noise. Brenden’s wild like that.
- 12. Corky
- They used to call my dad that. Legend has it that his father, upon his son’s birth, was heard to exclaim, “that kid’s a real corker!” I don’t know what that means.
- 13. I’m A Player (But I Ain’t Playin’ You)
- It was tough. Again, if you know her, you probably love her too.
- 14. Soliloquy: There Are No Words
- …But I will say a few about it: it might be a musical snapshot of my soul right now. I’d like to be proud of this piece, but I can’t take credit for it. The One who dictated it won’t register the copyright. Or have they? Anyway, I know the piano sample sucks but I wanted to share this rare moment.
About half way through writing this album, I realized that I’m not what you’d call a “jazz purist”. In fact, I’ve got a constantly nagging arsty, singer-songwriter side. I’ve known that for years, really, but I figured I’d better acknowledge it before I had a vocation built soley on novelty numbers.
All the tracks pretty much still go “ding-dinga-ding-dinga-ding” and, to quote Mahler, “It is well known that I cannot do without trivialities.” But towards the end of the CD, things start to get a little different – stylistically and especially content-wise. I think this is my new direction.
Stacey, my twelve-year-old niece, likes “The ‘Possum” the best. And preteen girls know music, man. Okay, maybe they don’t really KNOW music, but they sure as hell dictate what the music industry does. And even if you don’t agree with Stacey on “The ‘Possum”, I’ll bet there’s a couple tracks here right up your alley. The record really is that eclectic.
“Kitchen Swing” features my old bandmates Brenden Kearney and Steve Grams (KGB Trio, Kings of Pleasure) as well as other seasoned swingers like Harvey Newmark (Anita O’Day, Harry “Sweets” Edison) and Carl Sonny Leyland (Big Sandy and his Fly-Rite Boys). Despite the fact that I mixed it myself, it sounds pretty good thanks to mastering by Mike Cogan (Lavay Smith, Indigo Swing).
I like playing music you can take a bite out of, that you can drink in. Written music is just like a cookbook. Some people can follow the recipe and some people can’t, and even if you put in all the right ingredients in the right order it doesn’t guarantee it’ll be delicious. And, of course, like Zappa said, “unless you’re really weird you don’t eat the recipe.”
I think I got a handful of cats that know how to cook.
What do you think?