Monday, July 25, 2005

Marlena Shaw

Chess Records Studio

This months Mojo magazine CD celebrates Chess Records.

Leonard and Phil Chess were already the proprietors of several Chicago nightclubs when they bought into the Aristocrat label in 1947. Initially, most of the material which came from the label was jazz or jump blues but this all began to change with the arrival of Muddy Waters. Following his first hit, 'I Can't Be Satisfied' the brothers bought out their other partner and in 1950 renamed the label Chess.

Marlena Shaw was born in Valhalla, New York in 1942 and started performing at a young age (she was 10 when she appeared at the Harlem Apollo with her uncle). Her jazz roots explain her identifiable scatting sound on this track which she cut for Chess subsidiary Cadet in the mid-'60s. From there Shaw went on to sing with Count Basie and release several albums on Blue Note before being rediscovered by the acid jazz generation in the '90s.

Marlena Shaw - Liberation Conversation


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