From the Record Shelves #153

Be Bo Bo

78 rpm Odeon A 286063b

Jack Purvis is a favorite of mine. He left relatively few recordings behind and had a short career. Still, his biography fills much space in the Who’s Who of Jazz. There are so many stories and rumors connected to his colorful life, mostly of them not connected to music, that jazz enthusiasts and jazz historians love to tell. In short; He was a character. There are even rumors that the man found dead from a suicide in 1962 and reported as Jack Purvis was another person.

To me, he is the guy who made some very good records, playing trumpet with virtuosity and with a touching sound and vibrato. He also wrote arrangements and composed the tunes that he recorded under his own name. When he played and recorded with dance orchestras, he stood out briefly. He may have been the first to use a Harmon mute without the stem to expose a melody close to the microphone.

At the time of this inspired recording session, he was working with Ed Kirkeby of the California Ramblers. The group that Purvis assembled contains musicians like J.C. Higginbotham, trombone, vocal and Adrian Rollini on bass sax. Frank Froeba is at the piano and the sax solo is played by Greely Walton.