Thursday, December 17, 2009 , Updated 12:00 a.m., January 27, 2010
Big Bad Voodoo Daddy slated for Eisemann Center in Richardson January 30
They present new album How Big Can You Get?
RICHARDSON Big Bad Voodoo Daddy's eighth studio album, How Big Can You Get? A Tribute to Cab Calloway, captures the essence of an American icon in a rowdy celebration of musicianship, mischief, genius, street smarts, and fun. It’s also possibly the timeliest and most welcome album of the year -- bringing a much-needed high-voltage jolt of winning, feel-good energy to a country slogging through tough times that may be getting tougher … exactly the way that Calloway’s music did in the Depression-era America of his own youth. Big Bad Voodoo Daddy will appear at the Eisemann Center for one performance only on Saturday, January 30, 2010 at 8 p.m. in the Hill Performance Hall.
Longtime fans of “America’s favorite little big band” will immediately recognize the album as a milestone in Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s multi platinum-selling sixteen-year career. “Making the album was one of our biggest musical moments,” says lead vocalist, guitarist and songwriter Scotty Morris, who co-founded Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (BBVD) with drummer Kurt Sodergren in southern California. “Delving into Cab’s songs made us all realize how relevant they were to our time, and working on someone else’s music inside out caused a growth and depth in my work as a songwriter, arranger, and producer.” How Big Can You Get is not only an illuminating revival of Cab Calloway’s songbook: The making of the album was also the revelation of a lifetime for the band as a whole, whose ensemble playing, arranging, and interpretive powers were honed to an all-time high by the excellence of Calloway's songs.
Recorded in Los Angeles’ legendary Capitol Studios, located at the famous record-shaped building at Hollywood and Vine, How Big Can You Get came out of the rooms where innumerable classics had been recorded by Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Nelson Riddle, Billy May, and many others. Using Capitol’s vintage microphones and studio equipment, “we achieved a real marriage of his music and our arrangements and the group’s voice,” says Morris. The vibed-up excitement is unmistakable throughout the album: “We played songs top-to-bottom live, and chose the best takes for the album, because so many of Cab's definitive performances are live in films and radio broadcasts. This is the best and most ferocious we’ve ever sounded.” With the band’s stated mission to broaden the image of Cab Calloway beyond his signature tune, “Minnie the Moocher” (a BBVD live staple from the beginning), Calloway’s frequently hilarious ― and just as often socially aware ― material held its own keys to completing the album in a way that did justice to him.
Since their arrival on the music scene in 1993 in a legendary residency at Los Angeles’ Brown Derby nightclub, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy’s irresistible live show and aggressive, musically perceptive approach has proven them over time to be the singular standout among the numerous bands that launched the Nineties swing revival. The seven-man group forged a massively successful fusion of classic American sounds from jazz, swing, Dixieland, and big-band music, building their own songbook of original dance tunes, and, sixteen years later, BBVD is a veteran force that to this day adds new fans by the roomful every time they play.
Key to the depth of the new album is Calloway’s unparalleled gift for vivid storytelling, as well as his pointed social commentary. “We all noticed that the lyric of How Big Can You Get is unbelievably poignant to our time," says Morris.
Source: Eisemann Center for Performing Arts
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