LOUISIANA RED HOT RECORDS

Posts in the JAZZ category

Corey Henry - Lapeitah“The Next Funk Superstar from New Orleans”

The former leader of the Little Rascals Brass band turned favorite lead player for New Orleans jam band phenom Galactic, Corey Henry stepping out with Lapeitah, his national debut release from Louisiana Red Hot Records. Another outstanding Treme trombonist in the tradition of Trombone Shorty and Glen David Andrews, the Treme Funktet frontman is himself a brass band funk master with a rich pedigree that reads like a New Orleans royal coat of arms. While Corey’s original bands have created many of the most popular songs on the second line scene, on Lapeitah, Henry teams up with Brooklyn based Pimps of Joytime producer Brian J to breathe new life into the notoriously infectious brass/funk sound.

With guest appearances from heavy hitters like Corey Glover from Living Colour and Greg Thomas from George Clinton & Parliament Funkadelic, the album’s thrust lies in its ability to sweep from the broad, epic rock of Jimi Hendrix’s “If 6 Was 9,” to the timeless whoop and holler of the absolute new standard in second-line pride song found in “Baby C’mon,” with push-to- the-edge vocal from Cole Williams. Featuring one of the last known recordings of the late Trumpet Black and a keep-it- in-the- family collaboration with Henry’s daughter Jazz, the album plays like a 6th Ward block party, complete with youthful wit and the aged wisdom of the old guard porch stoopers. Equal parts anthemic and soulful, Lapeitah is most importantly, unbelievably funky.

Available Now! at Louisiana Music Factory
National Street Date: 6/24/2016

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threeMuses“…one of the most amazing vocalists alive today. He sanctifies, electrifies, hellafies. If you weren’t dancing at this show you were dead.” – Houston Press

On a good night Glen David Andrews is the most charismatic performer in New Orleans. Live at Three Muses perfectly captures one of those entrancing moments from a fiery GDA set of trad jazz, rock, gospel, and funk.


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dirty word“Ivan’s so good…I play with him.” – Keith Richards

“Dumstaphunk has grown from a small side project into one of music’s most prestigious modern funk ensembles.” – Rolling Stone

A decade into the formation of Dumpstaphunk, the New Orleans’ all-star collective – Ivan Neville (vocals, B3 and Clav), the double bass attack and soulful voices of Tony Hall and Nick Daniels III, Ian Neville on guitar, and the monster addition of Nikki Glaspie (formerly with Beyonce’s all-female band) on drums and vocals – releases their third studio album, Dirty Word.

Initially started as an impromptu line-up of some of New Orleans’ tightest players, hand-picked by Ivan Neville to accompany his 2003 New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival performance, Dumpstaphunk has become a stalwart touring act, richly deserving the title “Heavyweight Champions of Funk.” Press accolades for the band have ranged from the New York Times hailing, in 2007, “Dumpstaphunk is the best funk band from New Orleans right now,” to Bass Player Magazine saying, “The colossal low end and filthy grooves they threw down from the Gentilly Stage must have set a Jazz Fest record for baddest bass jams ever.”

Dirty Word offers a fresh and varied take on funk, blues, gospel, second-line, R&B and rock ’n’ roll. The album features special guest appearances by Art Neville, Trombone Shorty, Rebirth Brass Band, Skerik, Ani DiFranco and Flea (Red Hot Chili Peppers). Catch the band, supporting the album with major venue and festival appearances, throughout 2013. But be forewarned…the groove will be nasty and the funk will be deep!

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AL BELLETTO

Al BellettoBelletto was born January 3, 1928 in New Orleans. He attended Warren Easton High School, and studied music at Loyola University as an undergraduate before getting his masters in music at Louisiana State University. As a teenager, he was already working as a professional musician, playing on Bourbon Street and often backing up the burlesque dancers. He played with Louis Prima, Sharkey Bonano, Wingy Manone and the Dukes of Dixieland. Although he liked traditional jazz, he was attracted to the new modern sounds of bebop, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie. There was not much of a scene for this in New Orleans, so he moved to New York.

In New York, Belletto became friends with Mel Torme. Torme, who had first heard him while passing through Biloxi, got him signed to a booking agent, and introduced Belletto to Stan Kenton. Kenton got Belletto signed to Capitol Records, where he recorded The Al Belletto Sextette in 1955, Half and Half in 1956, and Whisper Not in 1957. These recordings were a swinging mix of the instrumental colors and cool sounds of West Coast jazz and the hard bebop of the East Coast. He had a minor hit with the song “Relaxin’” which became the theme to Dick Martin’s jazz program “Moonglow With Martin” on WWL 870-AM radio. Despite good reviews, the band was scuffling by until they met Woody Herman, who absorbed the sextet into his own Thundering Herd and then took them on a U.S. State Department tour of Central and South America in 1957.

By 1961, Belletto was back in New Orleans working as the musical and entertainment director of the Playboy Club. He broke the color line by hiring bassist Richard Payne, an African American, to play the club. When this displeased the local and state authorities, who threatened to sue, Belletto called Playboy founder Hugh Hefner, who apparently said, “Let ’em sue us. I’ve got better lawyers than the state of Louisiana.” Belletto continued hiring African-American musicians such as James Black, Ellis Marsalis, Alvin Batiste, Nat Perilliat and Earl Turbinton to play at the club. This was not the first time that Belletto had defied the racial barriers of the day. In the ’50s, he had been arrested for playing onstage at the Texas Lounge on Canal Street with Earl Palmer. Johnny Vidacovich, who played with Belletto starting in the late 1960s, recalls, “He went straight up chest to chest with all that bullshit. He was way ahead when it came to the racial game. He stood up for equal rights in black cats getting paid the same amount as the white cats. And he did that by hiring black cats to play the Playboy Club. That was pretty brazen at the time.”

Also in 1968, he was a member of the original New Orleans Jazz Festival board, and he made sure that the policy of the festival was that black musicians would get the same compensation as the white musicians. Belletto was also a board member of the local Musicians Union 174-495, and he was a founding member of the French Quarter Festival. He was Al Hirt’s bandleader in the 1980s, and provided the band for Bob Hope’s 81st birthday TV special.

Belletto also was known for his attitude as well as his playing. Trombonist Rick Trolsen, who played with him for several decades, said, “Al was capital ‘C’ Cool. When he got on the horn, he was all there. He wasn’t fucking around. He put 100 percent into everything he played. And it was always fun. There wasn’t any bullshit onstage. If he felt that something needed to be said, then he would say it, but very diplomatically. He was a consummate professional.”

In addition, Belletto supported musicians off the bandstand. Pianist David Torkanowsky remembers him as being “extremely generous. He mentored me and got me into the Playboy Club when I was underage so I could hear some jazz. And when I went to Boston to go to Berklee, he arranged for me to get a Playboy Gold credit card so that when I was too broke to eat in Boston, I could go to the Playboy Club to get something to eat. He was elegant and soulful and he played a funky, swinging saxophone.” Vidacovich agrees: “The comedians and singers who would come through the Playboy Club traveled the circuit and stayed for two weeks. On our Sunday nights off, Al would have them over for dinner, and his momma, who was pure Italian, made this red gravy—boy! Everybody working the Playboy Clubs knew that when they came to New Orleans, Al Belletto would take care of you.”

Belletto’s final recording would be 1997’s Jazznocracy, recorded at New Orleans Christ Church Cathedral.

Taken from David Kunian’s obituary in Offbeat Magazine, here.

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