"If Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald had a child together, it could not be more talented."
So says composer Christof Bergman about Jessy Carolina, the singer for a Brooklyn quartet called The Bill Murray Experience. The band has been booked into Savannah's Jazz'd Tapas Bar May 5.
As if the curious moniker wasn't enough - it came out of guitarist Horatio Baltz during a night of drunken revelry - the Bill Murray Experience is a "hot jazz" combo specializing in music from the VERY early 20th century - the ‘10s, ‘20s and ‘30s. Rooty-toot, in other words.
We're talking seriously old-timey tunes: "My Melancholy Baby," "Heebie Jeebies," "Won't You Come Home Bill Bailey," that kind of stuff. When you hear them, you can imagine the sound coming through a scratchy old lo-fi 78 RPM record.
Vocalist Carolina also plays washboard and tin whistle, Jay Sanford plays bass, and the fourth member, Blind Boy Paxton, switches between banjo, piano and "bones."
The combo has residencies at the Greenwich Village Bistro and Jules Jazz Bistro in New York City, and plays semi-regularly at the Jalopy Theatre in Brooklyn (for the "Roots & Ruckus Showcase"). During the warm season, they set up up in Greenwich Village's Washington Square Park. And they were among the artists performing the Simpsons theme, in they inimitable style, for the opening credits of The Simpsons 20th Anniversary Special 3D On Ice.
Sample their styles and sounds at www.myspace.com/billmurrayexperience.
More cool club dates to put on your calendar this month: Daryl Hance (who plays with JJ Grey and Mofro) plays the Live Wire Music Hall May 6; on May 19, Philadelphia's Matt Pond PA plays the Live Wire. And on May 21, the club welcomes back Col. Bruce Hampton.
Landsquid has been booked for the Tantra Lounge May 8.
Dare Dukes and the Blackstock Collection return to the Sentient Bean May 8 (Dare's been in New York for the last month or so).
Pentagram and Black Tusk plow into the Jinx May 22 (we've already reported this, but it bears repeating: Captured! By Robots returns to the Jinx May 8).
Heading into June: The wickedly weird Hellblinki Sextet returns to the Wormhole on the 5th.
And still more music
...Train Wrecks frontman Jason Bible headlines the Savannah Folk Music Society's First Friday concert May 7 at First Presbyterian Church. Also on the bill are Ken Skeens & Leigh Goldsmith...
...The vocal ensemble I Cantori is in performance May 7 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church ...
...Hotlanta blows into town May 16 for the Coastal Jazz Associations "Jazz - Just Across the River!" show at the Westin Harbor Resort on Hutchinson Island ...