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From the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die.

The Wildest!

Louis Prima

1956

The Wildest!
Album Summary

The Wildest! is an album by Louis Prima, first released in 1956. It features singer Keely Smith with saxophonist Sam Butera and the Witnesses. Allmusic expressed that "The Wildest! is the gem of Louis Prima's catalogue. None of his other efforts transcend its raunchy mix of demented gibberish, blaring sax, and explosive swing, which rocked as hard as anything released at the time." The album is considered a collection of Prima's signature recordings. The Wildest! is noted in the book 1001 Albums You Must Hear Before You Die. In it, critic Will Fulford-Jones states, "this is simply irrepressible music that more than matches its cover shot. Prima is joyous, rumbustious, and irresistible." Prima is also known for providing the voice for the orangutan King Louie in the 1967 Disney film The Jungle Book.

Wikipedia

Rating

3.55

Votes

11496
Genres
Jazz
Blues

Reviews

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Thu Sep 24 2020
5

Jazz standards by monkey guy from jungle book

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Fri Dec 03 2021
4

Just a rip roarin good time. I want whatever drugs Louis is having.

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Mon Oct 18 2021
5

Any album containing a song played by Marvin Berry and the Starlighters for the Enchantment Under the Sea dance is good enough for me! In a word though, this album is "joyous", end-to-end. It lands like a band of musicians who really are have a great time playing together and a band leader that is both putting on the act for the crowd and having fun goofing for the band itself. Even songs with titles like "(I'll Be Glad When You're Dead) You Rascal You" lands like playful teasing between friends. I'll definitely be coming back to this album again and again. Worth every star. Interesting aside, this is the first album where I noticed the wikipedia page pointed to the book that appears to be the source material for this site's list. Spoiler alert.

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Thu Jun 17 2021
3

there’s only so much scatting one girl can take

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Tue Jan 26 2021
4

I will not tell you how many songs in I was when I realized that Louis Prima voiced the orangutan king in The Jungle Book (facepalm). But this is my kind of cooking music! I particularly like the vocal quality of the female singer (Keely Smith I’m guessing?) and the harmony sections. Remarkable how many of these songs start with nearly the exact same walking bass line from the piano, just in different keys (listen to the first few seconds of #1, #3 and #6). There was an Italian grocery store down the street from our last apartment in Long Island and this is very much the type of music they played, so it was a nostalgic listen. Final thought - did “gigolo” mean something different in 1956?

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Mon Dec 07 2020
5

I bet you this would've been super fun to see live. New Orleans truly has a fantastic music scene, and Mr. Prima must've been the absolute king. Love the sense of humor and the lively brass. Favorite tracks: "Buono Sera", "I'll Be Glad When You're Dead", "Jump Jive an' Wail"

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Thu Sep 30 2021
1

It was unfair to take this photo while the man was yawning. Having said that, he has good top teeth. The bottom teeth are either missing or hidden.

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Wed May 05 2021
5

Love it, makes me want to dance. The oldest one yet and the funniest one probably

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Thu Jan 06 2022
5

I bet Louis Prima and David Lee Roth would have been fast friends. After listening to this album, I have a sneaky suspicion that Diamond Dave patterned his entire lead singer persona on Prima. We should have known this when one of the first things Roth did after leaving Van Halen was to cover "Just A Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody". You can totally picture Roth singing a lot of these lyrics scored to Eddie Van Halen's manic guitars and Michael Anthony providing the background vocals instead of Keely Smith. And I'm also guessing Diamond Dave's lifetime dream would be to voice an orangutan in a Disney movie. Similar to most things involving Roth, this thing is a freaking party. I love an album cover that tells you everything it's all about. Look no further to hear why Louis Prima was called The King Of Swing. What an absolute joy.

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Fri Jan 22 2021
3

I actually enjoyed this more then I expected - but a whole album of trumpet-y swing is a bit much for me

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Mon Oct 04 2021
5

Funny, energetic recording of Prima's legendary live show. It's loose and irreverent, uptempo and hilarious. Prima takes liberties with his own material and jazz standards to create a raucous big band experience that leans towards the coming RnB.

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Tue Feb 02 2021
4

Quite enjoyable from King Louis

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Tue Oct 19 2021
4

This is wild alright! Also rich and engaging, I just ordered the vinyl.

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Mon Sep 06 2021
3

This is great party music. I'd heard David Lee Roth's cover of "Just a Jigalo", and I much prefer Louis Prima's version. But it's so cool to hear where that came from.

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Thu Aug 10 2023
2

[Exterior: Brooklyn, New York. Summer 1961. We fade into a street level view of a working class neighborhood, a block of Brownstone, 3 story walkups. Boys clad in white t-shirts and slacks play stickball in the middle of the street. Girls skip rope on the sidewalk. In the distance, a fire hydrant has been uncapped, spraying water into the street for children splash around in: a welcome reprieve on an unrelentingly hot August day. The camera pans from street level and slowly zooms in on a window on the third floor of one of the Brownstones] [Interior: Third floor apartment living room with adjoining kitchen - A man, mid 40’s, wearing a ratty sleeveless undershirt sits in an armchair, listening to a record play on his console stereo. He is smoking a cigarette and reading the newspaper. A small silver metallic fan stationed on a nearby end table oscillates slowly, providing the slightest bit of relief from the punishing heat. His wife, Marie, is in the kitchen making a jello mold with the fruit she picked up at the market earlier in the day. The man taps his foot to the record…eventually his eyes light up, struck by an idea.] The man says to his wife: “Oh, Marie! Why didn’t you tell me there was going to be some porno jazz on this 1001 albums list?!? This is fantastic! I tell you what…you call the Lombardi’s, you tell them to get their asses over here at 7pm for dinner. They gotta hear this fuckin’ record…unbelievable! I’m gonna head down to the butcher, get some braciole, some gabagool…it’s gonna be a party!” [end scene]

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Fri Feb 26 2021
5

Love hearing him tell his band to let it rip on their solos - SING UP. The call and response songs are great too, especially the Lip. Some of them are funny as well - Glad When You're Dead and the twist at the end of Banana Split is hilarious.

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Wed Jan 20 2021
5

Great 50's party music. The band is red hot and the lyrics are quite amusing. Hard to be depressed while listening to this stuff!

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Fri Nov 03 2023
5

Całkiem zajebisty stary jazz.

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Tue Feb 13 2024
5

The warmest, the strongest, the wildest! Fuuuck just a gigolo isch jo mol crazy guet. Gad zwei mol glost. For you I'd learn how to bake a pie, okee da isch scho no cute. I find amel chli schwierig wenn lüüt seged bring back the good times. Aber wenn hesch s letscht mol e pärli ghört zweistimmig scatte Uiii noone plays high notes like the lip! Wieso isch de song so funny? Nocher die nöchste paar sind meh chli standart songs. Sehr guet aber nöd meega bsunders. Uultra solids album und eifach en vibe wod nüm so ghörsch, dases so funny druf sind. Ussert in punk und so.

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Thu Jul 01 2021
4

This was a surprisingly fun record. I did not expect to enjoy this album NEARLY as much as I did. It felt like the soundtrack to an old black & white film or a modern Pixar movie - in all the best ways. There's so much life and joy and energy here. It's just a blast. That said, it's definitely a particular vibe and I'm not usually in the mood for something likt that. But I'm making a note of this one to come back to when I AM in the mood because, when you want it, it comes in hot.

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Sun May 02 2021
4

I'm a big fan of this particular brand of swing music, where it's got this energy and gibberish and craziness to the lyrics. It feels like a party to me, and it connects with me a lot more than straight Jazz.

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Tue Jan 26 2021
4

I like this way more than I expected. It sounds like people having a great time. The harmony in the brass and vocals is really satisfying, and their voices are really cool individually.

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Wed Jan 20 2021
4

What can I say other than it's snappy, energetic and makes you want to dance. Love Louis and his collaborations with Keely Smith and Sam Butera. No one plays high knows like The Lip. (yip yip yip yip)

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Tue Feb 02 2021
4

This is the good thing about this. Never in a million years would I have listened to a Louis Prima album! Good fun.

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Sat Jul 17 2021
4

Louis Prima uses his vocal command to weave a catchy record with an easy beat. It seems that this record begins to bridge the dinner club / big band era toward the next stage of being a jazz singer.

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Fri May 28 2021
4

Super fun and energetic! Great mix of traditional songs, comedy songs, and instrumentals. Holds up really well -especially with so much comedic content - for being from the 50s. Just jazzy enough without being overbearing and a great example of (mostly) using scat and ad libs without being annoying or overtaking the song. Several great tracks but Banana Split is a delight!

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Tue May 25 2021
4

Great mix of jazz, R&B, swing, and early rock and roll. This album is high energy until the very end. I have heard of Louis Prima before, but I'm glad to have become more familiar with his music. This album would have been very influential at this particular musical crossroads. Prima's embrace of the burgeoning rock and roll genre is a testament to his flexibility and openness.

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Mon Aug 02 2021
4

4.2 - Alright, alright, alright, alright! A swinging, bopping blend of big brass jazz and rock-n-roll. Stylish, energetic and fun. Not a stale doo-wop record, this one really pops.

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Fri Dec 03 2021
4

My favorite things about this sound, is that it is exemplified by very physical verbs. Swing. Jump. Jive. Wail. Very true to how this makes you feel.

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Sat Dec 04 2021
4

Pure fun! This is such a joyful album. I love Louis's voice and the playful way he engages the other contributors. Everything about this evokes carefree, don't take life too seriously fun vibes. I like it a lot!

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Thu Jan 04 2024
4

The Wildest! sent me into a reverie about the peculiar power held by recordings of party music made by and for the now-dead. This has the hoodlum energy of “Rumble” and would sit easily in a film like “Touch of Evil”, exuberant, suggestive, made for dancing, built from old structures, old instruments, edgy material in the day: the biker gang would move to this, Mexican Heston certainly not. Reckon Fatsuit Welles would side with the kids on this one. I think I’ll join him. (Most of those kids are gone now.)

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Tue Feb 13 2024
4

eifach orang-utan moment ich lieb d rueh aber au lebensfreud wommer iwie us de musig ghört s albumcover passt au seeehr guet ich lieb wenner iwie nonsense singt BANANA SPLIT FOR MY BABYYYYY fuck es macht so spass hahahah aso geg de schluss hani chli abghenkt aber so es klars 4i

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Tue Feb 23 2021
2

This isn't for me. It's harmless enough, though ridiculously repetitive, but that borders on the annoying. I would never choose to listen to this, but I wouldn't complain too much if it were on in the background in a shop or elevator.

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Tue Jun 21 2022
1

This was bloody awful. It was like listening to a whole album of Joe Dolce. I prefer Dave Lee Roth's version of Just a Giglio - and that's saying something. The only relief was when the instrumentals silenced the 'humour'.

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Tue Nov 21 2023
1

Niet helemaal mijn stijl, beetje meh

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Thu Jan 04 2024
1

Energetic swing-jazz belters. Sounds like kid's party music in places, just drivel and/or terrible lyrics. Louis Jordan with a lobotomy. Again, you can see why rock'n'roll was so exciting in the late 50's by contrast.

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Tue Jun 29 2021
5

Seriously, what a joyful ride this was. Loved everything about it. Could hardly not dance to it.

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Fri Jan 15 2021
5

what a fun, lighthearted album. I'll keep this one on deck

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Sat Mar 20 2021
5

Fun jamming. It is described as Vegas at 3AM and I feel it.

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Thu Feb 18 2021
5

So much better than expected.

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Was first introduced to Louis Prima and Keely Smith with the Big Night soundtrack. That was way too late in life! Enjoyed them ever since. Listening feels like I might be on the back porch of a two-flat in Melrose Park circa 1955. Buona Cera!

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Wed Jan 13 2021
5

Oh Marie, a classic. Jump Jive and Wail, the remake by Brian Setzer isn’t too bad. Love the bonus tracks on Spotify.

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Mon Jun 07 2021
5

Holy crap all these hits are the same dude on the same album. Wow.

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Mon Jul 05 2021
5

Una chulada de disco. Louis Prima representa un montón de esa época de fines de los 40s y todos los 50s en que el swing está en su apogeo, todavía suena bien a precursor de rocanrol pero incluso esa importancia histórica es lo de menos. El album es una explosión de alegría, vida, humor y movimiento; de verdad que puede transportar a uno y hacer que te sientas incluso después de 60 años como si estuvieras pasando la noche en el casino, cenando y viendo un show espectacular, las canciones y esa combinación de algunas más jazz y otras más swing, un conjunto de puros clásicos que lo hicieron grande y en versiones perfectas para el estilo. Mi parte favorita quizá es esa toma y da que hace con su voz y el saxofonista en "Oh Marie," respondiendose notas hasta que atropella al saxofón y le dice "Come on now what's the matter with you?" Ese juego, soltura y simple alegría creo engloba lo que hace especial tanto a Prima, a este estilo de música y en particular a este disco. No tiene sentido ponerme a mencionar canciones, al menos la mitad son clásicos y todas son una joya, incluso las dos instrumentales. De viaje en el tiempo a Las Vegas a una época con más clase y moral más relajada a la vez. Maravilla de elección para la lista.

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Wed Mar 03 2021
5

Hay que estar loco para no poner un 5 a este álbum

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Tue Mar 30 2021
5

This was a great treasure discovery. It resembles in me a great classic that I didn't know yet. Definitely, an album to listen to before die!

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Tue Feb 02 2021
5

Just wow! Such nice energy. New Orleans jazz.

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Tue Jan 19 2021
5

Louis Prima is always 5 stars in my book, so this album was a soft toss.

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Wed Feb 17 2021
5

Heh awesome, jazzy croony you raskal

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Tue Feb 23 2021
5

Cute Jazz album. Feels like it is very in line with trends of the 50's

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Fri Mar 26 2021
5

Fantastic album. Loved every song, even if they kind of blended together a bit. Just great energy and I got to add a song to abbey's playlist so that's a bonus

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Wed Mar 24 2021
5

wild, Italian, ridiculous, a pleasure to cook to.

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Tue Jun 08 2021
5

Very cute and chill, I liked it a lot, definitely gonna continue listening to it.

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Wed Sep 08 2021
5

mad men-esque bar loungie tunes i like.

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Mon Sep 13 2021
5

Хорош) Приятный джаз Будто вечер. Большая лубянка. Бары уже закрываются. На улице тепло. И светит понедельником.

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Thu Dec 02 2021
5

Fantastic, band had major talent, lots of humor, recognized songs. Several times, couldn't believe what I was hearing with the lyrics.

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Wed Jan 05 2022
5

10/10, Louis Prima is the fucking GOAT this album has so many bangers, still he’s made many other great songs that don’t even show up here like Pennies From Heaven, I Wan’na Be Like You, and What Will Santa Claus Say? overall just really great music I’d totally recommend

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Tue Jan 11 2022
5

This album was a lot of fun. So much creative energy.

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Fri Jan 14 2022
5

Best of the bunch thus far. Incredible. Loved every second of it.

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Mon Jan 31 2022
5

Ktebt 8 Saf7at Mel Bouheli Mte3 Dostoevsky W Ana Nesma3. I Recommend

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Wed Feb 02 2022
5

This one was awesome. The one about making pie and buona sera were good discoveries to be shared.

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Mon Feb 07 2022
5

Álbum do Rei dos Swingers. Jazz em estado puro. Trompetes sensacionais em canções gostosas de sentir. Li que Prima dublou o orangotango Rei Louie no filme "Mogli - O Menino Lobo". Aliás, uma das canções do filme é dele. Sensacional!

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Tue Mar 01 2022
5

I love this, unabashedly. I can tell why my grandpa had his first heart attack! Hotcha! Seriously though, this album overflows with a joy and brio that more than compensates for its vintage. The opening medley was hip enough for David Lee Roth to cover, but it's not even the highlight. I love the spritzing of the ol' italiano in 'Oh, Marie'; I love the clever silliness of 'The Lip'; I love the spot of Grieg dropped in to 'Body and Soul'. It's rare that an album combines fun with chops so adroitly. Also, isn't Prima's huffy foghorn voice wonderful? Yes, through the lens of the present day he would be charged with cultural appropriation - ever since Mezz Mezzrow, white guys in jazz had tried to mesh by sounding like they'd swallowed Cab Calloway's 'Hepster Dictionary' wholesale. Still, this is wonderful - and didn't Prima do a fine job in the Jungle Book also?

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Tue Mar 01 2022
5

Fucking love "Just a Gigolo". This whole album is amazing. A real crowd pleaser - pure entertainment. Damn. Good stuff. I listened to this thrice through and I mean I actually listened. Also - Shawn, that's Keely Smith on The Lip! From Thunder Road. Remember? Remember? Anyway. Five stars.

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Sat Mar 05 2022
5

This album was an absolute delight, including some splendid jazzy arrangements, a kickin' band, and the lovely surprise of Keely Smith on vocals. The star of the show is still Louis Prima. His big personality, exuberance and sense of humor are what keep this album going and make it so much fun to listen to. I really love this. Fave Songs (All songs, from most to least favorite): Jump, Jive, an' Wail; (I'll Be Glad When You're Dead) You Rascal You; Medley: Just a Gigolo / I Ain't Got Nobody (and Nobody Cares for Me); Medley: Basin Street Blues / When It's Sleepy Time Down South; (Nothing's Too Good) For My Baby; Oh Marie; Buona Sera; Night Train; Body and Soul; The Lip

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Tue Mar 08 2022
5

Pisano! Really unique, gruff voice. And what a trumpet player. Could listen to this all day. Those harmonies are so good. Those album covers are a choice, eh? Favorite tracks: (I'll be glad when you're dead) You Rascal You, the Lip, Jump Jive n Wail

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Mon Mar 28 2022
5

Loved it! Just a lot of fun. Final cut was the first song in memory that openly 'wished someone was dead' but done in such a way rhey wouldn't mind the journey

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Fri Apr 29 2022
5

this album is the one you put on when you're making some kind of Italian dinner

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Thu May 12 2022
5

This is absolutely wonderful! The entire album works together with the same drive and tempo with some alterations that still follow the same mood. You could just put this on and the entire thing would keep you up and moving.

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Thu May 26 2022
5

Unexpectedly delightful! Super fun album in a genre I usually wouldn't touch.

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Thu Jun 16 2022
5

Fun music from the 50s, some familiar songs

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Sat Jun 25 2022
5

I love this album. I'm a swing dancer and have spent many hours listening to this and other works by Prima. Fantastic album and a brilliant mix of swing and jump blues.

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Mon Aug 01 2022
5

this is just pure fun. cant help but love it

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Mon Aug 01 2022
5

I honestly loved this album. Such a fun blend of Louis’s Italian heritage with his jazz/blues upbringing in NEW Orleans. The songs/lyrics are good, but the instrumentation and vocals and their mixing and mastering are phenomenal

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Thu Sep 01 2022
5

fun album! little bit of raucous shouting and excitement throughout and overall a good time. Awesome piano playing on the second track, "Nothing's Too Good". Really tasteful and also technical. Love the instrumental "Body and Soul". Horn playing was fantastic! Yea this album was really incredible. 5/5 for me.

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Thu Sep 01 2022
5

Every song that came on, I had a smile plastered across my face. What a contagious, fun energy. I love the fast, playful bee-bah-ba-doop way he scats. And he’s a phenomenal, spirited trumpeter too! “The Lip” is hilarious. I love these time signature changes. And that bit in the middle of “Basin Street Blues / When It’s Sleepy Time Down South” when he scats off time and sets up the change? So good! I tried to list the album highlights but realized I was just typing out the track list. Every song is a blast. But if I had to pick one, “Just a Gigolo / Ain’t Got Nobody” is my favorite. Just amazing.

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Wed Sep 07 2022
5

Love this! I've long been a fan of Louis Prima and just adore the whimsicality of his music, the amazing playing and singing, and the overall vibe of this album! Oh, Marie is one of my favorite songs!

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Thu Sep 08 2022
5

Well this is just tremendous fun! Loved it! Hurray for King Louis! 🦧 Fave track - "Banana Split For My Baby" is awesome, but the title has to go to "The Lip" Yip! Yip! Yip! Yip!

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Wed Sep 14 2022
5

Wait a second - Just A Gigolo/I Ain't Got Nobody isn't a David Lee Roth original. Seriously, a crazy blend of styles that epitomizes cool. This is the the quintessential Louie Prima. The scat singing is over the top, but works great in this setting. I love the call and response. This is a non-rock record that rocks. Simply great music.

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Wed Sep 21 2022
5

5/5. What a fun and musically talented album. Everybody in the band seems to be having fun and each song stands on its own. Louis Prima is such a good frontman.

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Wed Sep 21 2022
5

Amazing album from a man who knew how to have fun with his music.

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Thu Sep 22 2022
5

Fulford-Jones said, "Prima is joyous, rumbustious, and irresistible". Can't argue with that! Simply The Wildest!

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Mon Sep 26 2022
5

Fantastic album, so vibrant and so energetic. The swing is so good, can't ask for much more here. 5/5

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