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Tony Crombie Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)

Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)

catalog number: CDEMB011

weight in Kg 0,107


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Tony Crombie: Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)

(2000/TKO Magnum Music) feat.Miles Davis, Harry Klein, Dizzy Reese and others


Tony Crombie - Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD) Medium 1
1: Short Stop  
2: You Go To My Head  
3: C'Est Si Bon  
4: Tres Gai  
5: I Can't Believe  
6: Compos Mentis  
7: Don't Worry About Me  
8: Early One Morning  
9: String Of Pearls  
10: Suite Sixteen  
11: Rock 'N' Roll Coaster  
12: Sweet Beat  
13: Sweet Georgia Brown  
14: Sweet Loraine  
15: Man From Interpol  
16: My Fair Laine  
17: Bolero Reverie  
18: The Toff  
19: Gut Bucket  
20: Pound The Drums  
21: Bouncin' With Beryl  
22: Jammin'  
23: Sadie's Song  
24: So Near So Far  


Artikeleigenschaften von Tony Crombie: Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)

  • Interpret: Tony Crombie

  • Albumtitel: Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)

  • Format CD
  • Music Genre Rock 'n' Roll
  • Music Style Special
  • Music Sub-Genre 855 Special Price Rock/Pop - CD
  • Title Tony Crombie - A Tribute (CD)
  • Release date 2000
  • Label MAGNUM

  • EAN: 0658028111125

  • weight in Kg 0.107

Artist description "Crombie, Tony"

The rock'n'roll explosion of the mid-fifties came from a musical amalgamation of black R&B and white Country Music, both intrinsic American styles. Thus when the early American rock'n'roll artists of the ilk of Bill Haley, Elvis Presley or Little Richard came upon the scene, they had had a background in one or other of the styles and more than a passing knowledge of the other.

But when this new form of music crossed the Atlantic, British artists were hard pressed to emulate their transatlantic cousins. There was no ethnic heritage in popular music in England; it had been the era of big bands and balladeers as far as the UK charts were concerned. The only musicians who fell outside of these categories were the jazz players who derived their inspiration from their
American counterparts.

Tony Crombie was born in the East End of London in the late 1920's, where his mother, a pianist at silent movies, instilled in him a passion for music. Without any formal tuition he was able to master the piano and drums before he had left school, and by the time he was 16 he had managed to insinuate himself into the 'Mazurka Club'  which heralded the start of a distinguished musical career. The BBC 'Accordion Club' afforded him a lengthy spell of broadcasting along with Tito Burns and gave him invaluable experience in playing alongside experienced jazz musicians like Johnny Dankworth.

The roots of jazz held an attraction for Crombie, and a holiday in America, when he went over with Ronnie Scott enabled him to study the music at first hand. He became a founder member of 'Club Eleven' in London along with Ronnie Scott and Johnny Dankworth, a co-operative venture involving some of the best jazz players in England. As Crombie's reputation grew so the demand for his services increased; he played for the Ted Heath band on their recording sessions when resident drummer Jack Parnell was called up for
vocal duties and in 1948 achieved the ultimate accolade of being invited to accompany Duke Ellington on his British tour along with guitarist Malcolm Mitchell and bass player Jack Fallon. 1952 saw him winning honours at the Paris Jazz Festival as a drummer and shortly thereafter joined Ronnie Scott's band for a two year stint before deciding to form his own band. A tour to Israel followed, a pioneering move for a British band that drew great critical acclaim which however wasn't matched by the financial rewards! In 1954 Crombie recorded in Jeff Kruger's'Jazz At The Flamingo' series with an all star rhythm & blues band. Recording for Decca, Crombie's band backed singer Annie Ross on her version of 'I Want You To Be My Baby'. They also recorded in their own right cutting numbers like 'Flying Home', 'Tiptoe Through The Tulips' and 'String Of Pearls'. 1955 saw the band distinguish itself at the Paris Jazz Festival. By this time Crombie was a heavyweight on the British jazz scene.

Not only had Crombie's interest in jazz led him to explore R&B, but the advent of rock'n'roll had also stimulated his interest. In its August 10th issue of 1956 the New Musical Express announced; 'New Crombie Band; Top stage dates and personnel announced'. The same NME carried an advert on its front page for Bill Haley's 'Rock Around The Clock'. Crombie was quoted as saying that he had taken a keen interest for several years in the music known as rock'n'roll and was looking to incorporate a visual aspect in the band's presentation (obviously having observed the performances of Haley's Comets and noted the visual impact).

This new line-up was christened Tony Crombie & His Rockets and featured Crombie himself on drums and piano accompanied by Rex Morris on tenor sax, Milt Sealey on piano, Jimmy Currie on guitar, Ashley Kozak on bass and Clyde Ray taking up the vocal duties. The band signed with Columbia and released their first single 'Short'nin' Bread Rock' backed with  'Teach You To Rock' (DB 3822), which gave them their first, and as it turned out only, chart hit, when in October 1956 it reached No. 25. At the same time they undertook a nationwide tour that kicked off in Portsmouth in mid-September and took in Sheffield, Birmingham, Nottingham, Liverpool, Glasgow and culminated at the Finsbury Park Empire in London. 'Short'nin' Bread Rock' was an adaptation of the old folk song 'Short'nin' Bread'. Some 4 years later Paul Chaplain & the Emeralds followed in Crombie's footsteps and recorded a rocking version of 'Short'nin'
Bread' an idea that was also covered by the Bellnotes and the Blisters. After a few singles the band had a 10 album released that was to
become a collectors' piece. Selling for the then princely sum of 25 6 (£1.271/2 in modern terms), it boasted ten tracks all of which with the exception of 'Hear My Plea'  and 'Take My Love' are included on this album. By the time the ten inch album was recorded in 1957 Red Mitchell had replaced Milt Sealey on piano. It is interesting to note that Crombie contributed prolifically as a writer; in conjunction with guitarist Jimmy Currie he wrote 'Rock'n'Roller Coaster', 'Stop It (I Like It)', 'Red For Danger' and 'Forgive Me Baby', other members
of the band also contributed. Rex Morris-with Don Lang - produced the superb rocking instrumental 'Rex Rocks', and Red Mitchell with Tony Crombie came up with 'Rock Shuffle Boogie'. The personnel details on the ten inch album make a nonsense of Morris' driving sax performance on 'Rex Rocks' by dubbing him 'Red' Morris - obviously a typographical error! For a British rock band to be writing their own material in 1957 was pretty avantgarde, but Crombie and his sidemen were no callow youngsters pitched into the turmoil of the pop world, but seasoned musicians who understood the importance of publishing their own material.

Crombie styled himself on the early rock'n'roll bands like Bill Haley & the Comets, and whilst he produced a raw driving sound which stands up well to the test of time, he was just a shade late; for just as he was moving into top gear in 1957 8, the bands of the mid-fifties such as Haley were falling from favour in terms of chart popularity, and the solo artists with individual charisma were taking the honours. It is probably for this reason that Crombie failed to achieve the chart recognition that the quality of his output undoubtedly deserved, as witnessed by the current demand for his product. Whether it was a viewing of the film 'Rock Rock Rock' or some kind of association with Milton Subotsky isn't clear, but for their third and fourth singles Crombie & His Rockets, for the first time launched into cover versions,
kicking off with 'The Big Beat' and 'Rock Rock Rock' (a direct cover of Jimmy Cavello & the House Rockers issued on Coral  72226 in the UK), and then following up with "Lonesome Train" "We're Gonna Rock Tonight". (The former
was performed by the Johnny Burnette Trio and the latter by the Three
Chuckles). All four songs were featured in the film "Rock Rock Rock", in which
Milton Subotsky had a strong stake; like if the performers didn't sing his songs
they didn't get to be included in the movie. Three of the numbers are fairly
straightforward cover versions of the originals. However, when it comes to
Johnny Burnette's "Lonesome Train", a feverish slab of rockabilly in its
original form, the Crombie band take it at a completely different pace in a style
akin to Guy Mitchell complete with some cheerful whistling. It sounds nothing
like the original, probably wisely so as it would have been nigh on impossible to
match the Burnette's raw dynamism and style. The four sides were also culled
together on an EP (SEG 7676).
After this sortie into American material, Crombie reverted to original,
indeed patriotically native numbers by coupling "Brighton Rock" "London
Rock" (DB 3921), which followed in the tradition of one of his previous releases
"Sham Rock" (DB 3859). This started off as a rocked up version of the
traditional Irish air "Molly Malone" but then diverts into other pastures. Al2
album followed, "Sweet & Rhythmic" in which every title included the word
`sweet' from "Sweet Georgia Brown" to "Stay As Sweet As You Are".
After this somewhat esoteric excursion Crombie came up with a
superb single "Dumplins" "Twon Special" (DB 4076). The topside written and
recorded by Doc Bagby was issued in the UK on Fontana and was also covered
by Ernie Freeman. "Twon Special" is another above par instrumental that
places this record firmly in the front line of the then popular vogue as
exemplified by Lord Rockingham, Johnny & the Hurricanes, Champs and their
By 1958 Crombie must have felt somewhat disappointed at the lack
of commercial success that the Rockets had produced despite the undoubted
excellence of their output. It was time for a change of direction; Tony Crombie
& the Rockets were no more, now it was Tony Crombie & His Men. Their first
single, still on Columbia, was the unpronouncable,"Piakukaungcung"
"Ungauga- (DB 4145). It's basically an instrumental with a sporadic chorus
chanting something that sounds like "Hiya Popeye", but is presumably the
title. It was in fact a cover of a number recorded by the Doles Dickens Band
(Dot 15745), whilst the chunky flipside "Ungauga" was originally done by the
Kingpins (United Artists 111).
A brief flirtation with the cha-cha saw "Gigglin' Gurgleburp"
"Rock Cha Cha" (DB 4189) and "Champagne Cha Cha" "Shepherd's Cha Cha"
(DB 4253) issued as consecutive singles. But an album by Tony Crombie & His
Men indicated the direction that Crombie was taking. Titles like "St James
Infirmary" and "Stompin' At The Savoy" pointed back firmly to Crombie's roots
in jazz.
His Men eventually disbanded and Crombie himself signed with Top
Rank cutting several albums including "Man From Interpol TV Series- (35 043)
and "Drums Drums Drums" (BUY 027) that gave him an opportunity to fully
display his virtuoso talents. "Sweet Wide And Blue" (SKL 4114), -an album
from his original label Decca followed, where he also recorded "Twelve
Favourite Film Themes" (SKI 4127). A further move to the Ember label run by
his former agent Jeff Kruger saw the Tony Crombie Jazz Group release an album
titled "Whole Lotta Tony" (EMB 3336). The wheel had gone full circle.
The 22 sides on this album represent some of the best original British
rock'n'roll, that have been neglected until now. They are rarer than a
transvestite teddyboy and as a result many if not most of the tracks will be
unfamiliar to all but the more affluent of collectors, who have been able to
afford the astronomic prices commanded by the records of Tony Crombie & His
Rockets. Have you ever seen one before? Whatever the answer to that
question, do yourself a favour and treat yourself to this monster portion of
uninhibited, primitive fifties rock'n'roll.
(With acknowledgements to John Goldman)
Adam Komorowski (Editor New Kommotion)

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