Awesome jump blues/swing duo doing "Nagasaki"

Carrie McLaren is a guest blogger at Boing Boing and coauthor of Ad Nauseam: A Survivor's Guide to American Consumer Culture. She lives in Brooklyn, the former home of her now defunct Stay Free! magazine.

I was all set to post the Philharmonicas doing Raymond Scott's "Powerhouse" but just realized that Mark already did. Fie! Well, here's an equally swank soundie: the Don Redman Orchestra featuring a curious duo known as Red and Struggie, who = the bomb. Totally hilarious. (Both of these appeared on a 1994 MGM swing compilation.)


  1. Well, I don’t ever chew tobaccy, but I do look forward to the wicky-wacky-woo!

    Thanks for this.

  2. They swing those vocals so hard.. it’s like molasses on top of that icy crisp big band..

    Go watch everything Peter has up on youtube.

  3. Awesome. In every way. The stage sets. The outfits. See, Snoop? See, Fiddy? Now that’s Big Pimpin’.

  4. I believe comments 6 and 8 already covered my thoughts on the matter. That was a cool performance.

  5. Ahh, the good old days. When blacks dressed up in costume to perform absurdist songs in clubs they wouldn’t even be allowed to walk into.

    Sorry, history is a bummer.

  6. While I certainly agree this clip has more than a passing resemblance to a Minstrel act, there were many large upscale clubs where both the audience and the performers were African-American. The audience in this clip appears to be African-American.

    I prefer this clip, which also features African-American extras as audience.

  7. The Goodman Quartet version is the same song with the lyrics removed. It was written in 1928 by Harry Warren and Mort Dixon.

  8. Here’s a much better version, IMHO:

    Django Reinhardt, Stephane Grappelli and Freddy Taylor.
    1936, not after 1945, BTW.

  9. Top Shelf Jazz (the band which featured on BoingBoing a couple of weeks ago – “part Cab Calloway, part Atomic Fireballs, all good smutty Prohibition jazz”) did a version of this number too. Absolutely worth checking out!

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