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The Boswell Sisters - Volume 1 by The Boswell Sisters

The Boswell Sisters-Connee, Helvetia, Martha-were among the first (if not the first) vocal jazz group. They didn't scat a lot, but when they did it sounded unearthly and their harmonies were so close they were the vocal equivalent of the Woody Herman "Four Brothers" sax section. The Boswells formed in New Orleans in the mid-1920s and disbanded in the mid-30s, and during their career they were backed on record by such as Jimmy & Tommy Dorsey, Joe Venuti, Eddie Lang and Bunny Berigan.

Theirs was a deceptively genteel-sounding take on the hot jazz stylings of the period, their harmonies sweet on first listen, but full of mad yet focused swing, appealingly tart sass and amazing vocal gymnastics. Yet they were loyal to The Song-"There'll Be Some Changes Made" has, to these jaded ears, never had such power while still being FUN. These songs-"It's The Girl," "I Thank You, Mr. Moon"-are of the period, and the Boswells' genius allows them to not only encapsulate their time but transcend it. Without them, there'd be no Andrews Sisters (a very poppy, "whitened" version of the Boswells), no Shangri-La's, no Manhattan Transfer, nada. Plus you get to hear some sizzling-hot solos from Joe Venuti and The Dorseys. This is essential for jazz AND pop group-vocals fans. Period.

Additional Info

  • Artist / Group Name: The Boswell Sisters
  • CD Title: The Boswell Sisters - Volume 1
  • Genre: Jazz Vocals
  • Year Released: 2000
  • Record Label: Collectibles
  • Rating: Five Stars
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