J Street Jumpers: Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby
“Fronted by sultry vocals from chanteuse Marianna Previti alternating with Arthur Gerstein’s gruff and wiggy Prima-esque jiving, the J Street Jumpers execute a perfect fit with their swaggering horn arrangements, lustful lyrics and dance-til-dawn swing beat,” describes CMJ. A staple of the vital East Coast swing scene for decades, the Jumpers exude the jitterbug beat of Harlem, the LA jump blues of the ’50s, and the soulful raunch of N’Orleans R&B. Blues Access said, “I had to double check to make sure this really wasn’t something recorded in the ’40s...Marianna Previti has nailed that Lil Green-Dinah Washington sound of the era. Fans of the bluesy swing of Louis Jordan, the Liggins Brothers, (and) Louis Prima will definitely dig this…” Five-Stars from Down Beat.
- 1. Better Beware (R.Darnell/J.Otis)
- 2. Ain't But One (B. Johnson)
- 3. Night Life Boogie (J. Liggins)
- 4. That's How I Feel About You (B. Johnson)
-Listen to Sample
- 5. Topsy (Battle/Durham)
- 6. Jump Jive And Wail (L. Prima)
-Listen to Sample
- 7. Gal With A Whole Lotta Loot (J. Liggins)
- 8. When I Get Low I Get High (Sunshine)
-Listen to Full Song
- 9. Please Send Me Someone To Love (P. Mayfield)
- 10. Momma, He Treats Your Daughter Mean (J.Wallace/H.Lance)
- 11 Onion (W.Doggett/L.Jordan)
- 12. Going Back To New Orleans (E. Walsh)
- 13. Sure Had A Wonderful Time Last Night (Demetrius/Moore)
- 14. The Big Question (W. Wright)
- 15. Is You Is Or Is You Ain't My Baby? (Austin/Jordan)
- 16. At Last (M.Gordon/H.Warren)
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REVIEW by Down Beat
The Jumpers is an octet-strength swing unit of solid musicality and musicianship that strikes some heat here with an addictive version of “Topsy” based on the 1958 Cozy Cole version. Jeff Lodsun handles the rocking drum work with authority. There are also consistently good solos from Don Lerman [tenor and alto] and Steve Shaw [trombone] and fine ensemble blends on “Onion.” Singer Marianna Previti, heard on most tracks, sings in a light sound reminiscent of Helen Humes. The ‘40s sensibility extends to Pierre Sprey’s engineering, which nicely catches the 1949 Mercury studio sound. -John McDough
REVIEW by Bound For Sound
Recording of Merit.
The big band sound is something that a person knows whether he likes it or not, there's very little room for in between. Still, The J Street Jumpers seem to have what should be considered a "crossover" album here, an album that should appeal to rockers, rappers as well as big banders--it's good music, and good music knows no barriers. It starts with the innocent, yet cunningly seductive voice of Marianna Previti, she's special. Marianna fits the motif of the music perfectly, and if your blood isn't boiling and your head spinning after she slides through "That's How I Feel About You" and "Jump, Jive and Wail", then you ain't breathin'. There's much more than acute vocal with accompaniment going on here. It's as if the J Street Jumpers have a tongue firmly planted in cheek on each cut without ever being so obvious about it that it loses its freshness. What comes across is an ensemble of performers that really are having a good, if irreverent, time of it. As is always the case with a Wildchild recording from Mapleshade, the sonics are at the edge of the best you've ever heard. Big band dynamics are abundant with a transparency that goes to the back of the stage and then some. It seems that Pierre Sprey may have voiced this recording a bit by pushing Marianna's voice back a little into the stage to five the recording a 30's feel about it. If he has, the result is an intriguing mix of 30's feel on a 1990's state-of-the-art recording. A fun time recording with demo quality sound. -Martin DeWulf
REVIEW by CMJ
The J Street Jumpers could easily be lumped in with modern-day swingers and shufflers like Cherry Poppin' Daddies, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy and Squirrel Nut Zippers, but the Washington, DC-based group has actually been on the retro-musical bandwagon for nearly 15 years. This raucous group of nine miscreants stirs up the unmistakable ruckus of an off-the-wall jump band. For instance, bass player Adam Friedman favors the thumping, slapping sound of real gut strings on the bass, a type of equipment choice most players abandoned by the '50s. Fronted by sultry vocals from chanteuse Marianna Previti alternating with Arthur Gerstein's gruff and wiggy Prima-esque jiving, the J Street Jumpers execute a perfect fit with their swaggering horn arrangements, lustful lyrics and dance-till-dawn swing beat. -James Lien
REVIEW by Jazz Times
What you have here is danceable swing, with lustful lyrics and great solos performed by a tight-knit group of nine musicians who are out to have a good time. From the opening "Better Beware", the listener can't help but become mesmerized by the passionate, energetic, Lady-Dayish vocals of Marianna Previti, who does wonderful things with her voice and lyrics. She will steam your glasses with her interpretation of "That's How I Feel About You", move you with "At Last", and give you a good time with "Mama, He Treats Your Daughter Mean".
Drummer Jeff Lodsun drives the group on a memorable "Topsy", a showcase arrangement for the band. Throughout, there's great sax work from Charlie Hubel, with Don Lerman impressive on clarinet, solid trumpet from Vince McCool, and a great bluesy piano (and vocals, too) from Arthur Gerstein. Put it on and dance 'til dawn. -David Zych