My good friend John Wriggle left me my first comment below on the Armstrong-Kid Ory "Disneyland After Dark" video (sounds like a dirty HBO America Undercover documentary, huh?). He asked if there's any other videos of Ory doing "Muskrat Ramble" and I found two more. This one is from Paris, 1956 and features Alvin Alcorn, trumpet, Phil Gomez, clarinet, Cedric Heywood, piano, Wellman Braud, bass and Minor "Ram" Hall on drums:
This one is also from Paris, 1959 and features Henry Red Allen, trumpet,Cedric Haywood, piano, Alton Redd, drums and William Girsback (or as Armstrong dubbed him, Squire Gersh), bass. On clarinet? No joke....Bob McCracken! (An old inside joke between me and John.)
Ory sings lyrics Armstrong originally recforded for Decca in 1954 but he never sang them live. Ory, on the other hand, loved the lyrics and sang them all the time. I also realize I might have been a little too harsh on the Disneyland version of "Muskrat," where the two-beat of the Ory group sounded too corny. The Ory band rarely played that way and instead swung much like the All Stars (ever hear Ory's Verve recordings? Sounds like a Basie rhythm section at times!). Anyway, I haven't ordered it, but the concert with Red Allen is apparently available on a video on the website jazzcrusade.com. These clips come from dailymotion.com...check it out as there's some good stuff not on YouTube.
As for me, I'll be back soon with a post on the new CD issue of Armstrong's 1958 concert at the Monterey Jazz Festival...til then! (And keep those comments coming!)