Let's Have A Party (The Aladdin Recordings) by Amos Milburn

Label: Aladdin Records / Rev-Ola Records.
Release Date: 1957.
Releases: November 20, 2007.
Recording Time: 76 minutes.
Recording Date: January 4, 1950 - January 28, 1957.
Recording information: Los Angeles, CA (01/04/1950-01/28/1957); New Orleans, LA (01/04/1950-01/28/1957); New York, NY (01/04/1950-01/28/1957).

Styles: Jump Blues, Early R&B, Piano Blues, Regional Blues, West Coast Blues.

Few artists in the history of recorded music have made alcoholism seem quite as appealing as Amos Milburn did on his run of hits for Aladdin Records in the '40s and '50s. Milburn was one of the biggest rhythm & blues stars of the pre-rock era, and his celebrations of wild, booze-fueled nights -- "Let Me Go Home, Whiskey," "Bad, Bad Whiskey," "Juice, Juice," "Vicious, Vicious Vodka," and "One Scotch, One Bourbon, One Beer" among them -- were potent enough to give even the most zealous reader of The Big Blue Book second thoughts about turning down a cocktail. It helped that Milburn was a top-shelf boogie pianist with a sly, witty vocal style, and he was fortunate enough to get just the right help in the recording studio. Let's Have a Party (The Aladdin Recordings) collects 29 numbers Milburn recorded between 1950 and 1957, which means a few of his biggest early hits don't make the cut (the frantic version of "Chicken Shack Boogie" which appears here is a recut recorded in New Orleans in 1956, with Lee Allen and Red Tyler on sax), but what's here is uniformly fine, and even the silly closing number, "We Teenagers Know What We Want" (recorded when Milburn was pushing 30), cooks with gas. While roadhouse jump blues was Milburn's specialty, that's not all this set has to offer; Milburn delivers a great version of Lionel Hampton's "Flying Home," shows his gift for slow blues on "Tears, Tears, Tears," and even leaves the bottle alone for a while on the midtempo groove "Milk and Water." Among single-disc collections of Milburn's work, The Best of Amos Milburn: Down the Road Apiece has the edge since it includes his material from the '40s, and Mosaic's exhaustive The Complete Aladdin Recordings of Amos Milburn is heartily recommended to the wealthy and obsessed, but Let's Have a Party is still an excellent collection of Milburn in his prime, and it'll have you and your friends cracking open your liquor cabinet in no time flat. - Review by Mark Deming.

Credits: Lee Allen Orchestra - sax (tenor); Adolphus Alsbrook Jr. - bass; John Anderson - trumpet; Irving Ashby - guitar; Bob Bain - guitar; Mickey Baker - guitar; Norman Blake - synthesizer; Oscar Lee Bradley - drums; Johnny Brown - guitar; David Bryant - bass; Charles E. Calhoun - composer; Red Callender - bass; Eddie Chamblee - sax (tenor); Harper Cosby - bass; Lola Anne Cullum - composer; Adelia Davis - composer; Maxwell Street Jimmy Davis - musical director, sax (tenor); Donald Dean - drums; Clyde Dunn - sax (tenor); Monte Easter - composer; Harry "Sweets" Edison - trumpet; Joe Evans & Arthur McClain - sax (baritone); Frank Fields - bass; Joe Foster - producer, synthesizer; Ernie Freeman - composer, musical director, piano; Benny Goodman - composer; Jewell L. Grant - sax (alto), sax (baritone); Ralph "Chuck" Hamilton - bass; Lionel Hampton - composer; Herbie Harper - trombone; Peppermint Harris - composer; Frank Haywood - composer; Al Hendrickson - guitar; Bill Hill - sax (tenor); Milt Holland - drums; Plas Johnson - sax (tenor); Harry Parr Jones - trumpet; Rufus "Speedy" Jones - drums; Harry Klee - sax (alto); Bob Kornegay - composer; Johnny Mandel - musical director; Jack Marshall - guitar; Ray Martinez - drums; Eldeen McIntosh - drums; Claude McLin - sax (tenor); Amos Milburn - composer, piano, primary artist, vocals; Johnny Lee Moore - guitar; Andy Morten - artwork, design; Hubert "Bumps" Myers - sax (tenor); Lawrence Norman - drums; Dave Penny - annotation, liner notes, producer; Gene Phillips - guitar; Jessie Mae Robinson - composer; Leroy Robinson - sax (alto), sax (baritone); Arnold Ross - piano; Isaac Royal - trumpet; Shifty Henry's All-Stars - composer; Adolph Smith - composer; Clifford Solomon - sax (tenor); Arnett Sparrow - trombone; Jesse Stone - musical director; Johnny Taylor - composer; Rudy Toombs - composer; Lloyd Trotman - bass; Monroe Tucker - composer; Alvin "Red" Tyler - sax (baritone); Don Wilkerson - sax (tenor); Paul Winley - composer.

Tracks: 1) I'm Gonna Tell My Mama; 2) Sax Shack Boogie (#9, 1950); 3) Bad Bad Whiskey (#1, 1951); 4) Let's Rock A While (#3, 1951); 5) Tears, Tears, Tears (#5, 1951); 6) I Love You Anyway; 7) Ain't Nothing Shaking; 8) Just One More Drink; 9) Flying Home; 10) Thinkin' And Drinkin' (#8, 1952); 11) Long Long Day; 12) Greyhound; 13) I'm Still A Fool For You; 14) Rock, Rock, Rock; 15) One Scotch, One Bourbon, One Beer (#2, 1953); 16) Good Good Whiskey (#5, 1954); 17) Let Me Go Home Whiskey (#3, 1953); 18) Let's Have A Party; 19) Milk And Water; 20) I Done Done It; 21) One, Two, Three Everybody; 22) Vicious Vicious Vodka; 23) House Party; 24) Juice, Juice, Juice; 25) Chicken Shack Boogie; 26) Every Day Of The Week; 27) Shake, Shake; 28) Soft Pillow; 29) We Teenagers Know What We Want.