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My motto is; if you don't hit some 'wrong' notes once in a while you're not trying hard enough - Mitch Holder on playing live, Interviews With The Jazz Greats

Author Topic: The Jubilee Four  (Read 3296 times)

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Offline Dr. G

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The Jubilee Four
« on: December 11, 2006, 05:59:58 AM »
Hi BH and Stuart,

You guys ROCK.

You give hope that the second great era of blues recording (1950--) will not necessarily go the way of the first one!

I am hugely appreciative of your time, interest, and talents...and shall seek to procure the aforementioned (reissue) double-CD set.

By the way, that "UK-reissue" thing opens up all kinds of possibilities to recover long-lost (or long-worn-out) vinyl gems...especially for us Yanks [who occasionally need reminding that so much of the CB and jazz were/are supported by Brits and other old-world types long before it became fashionable].

For example...if you're not tired of doing me favors...any inspirations on a terrific Reprise LP (R-2006) by the Jubilee Four ("Lookin' up the Jubilee Four") -- c 1961,,,? This group was a vestige of the original Golden Gate (Jubilee) Quartet -- the unrivaled kings of gospel and (IMHO) a capella singing of any type ["Children Go where I Send Thee" I submit as incontrovertible evidence]. (The family LP is ground down to practically flat!)

Any assistance greatly appreciated...although certainly not "expected" (!)

Dr. G

Offline Stefan Wirz

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  • Tach-chen!
    • 'American Music'
The Jubilee Four
« Reply #1 on: December 11, 2006, 08:24:48 AM »
don't know anything about those guys, but anyway - here's at least a picture of 'em:

Offline Bunker Hill

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The Jubilee Four
« Reply #2 on: December 11, 2006, 09:53:13 AM »
don't know anything about those guys, but anyway - here's at least a picture of 'em:
They started out life as the Jubalaires (recording for Decca from 1943-5). Made a few 78s for King in 1947. They disappeared from the recording scene in 1950 but re-emerged as the Jubille Four (Willie Johnson, Jimmy Adams, Theodore Brooks, George McFadden) to cut that LP for Reprise in 1961. As the Jubailares that did several dozen gospel and secular "World" transcription discs in the late 40s.

This information gleaned from Vol. 1 (A-K) R. Laughton & C. Hayes: Gospel Records 1943-69 (Record Information Services 1992)

This seems to be a million miles from Lightnin' Hopkins but I won't tell if you don't... :) ;D

Offline Slack

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Re: The Jubilee Four
« Reply #3 on: December 11, 2006, 09:57:14 AM »
This seems to be a million miles from Lightnin' Hopkins but I won't tell if you don't..

There you go.  ;)

Offline Dr. G

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  • Posts: 117
Re: The Jubilee Four
« Reply #4 on: December 11, 2006, 04:10:55 PM »
Hey Slack,

Thanks for rescuing me from further (much-deserved) disapprobation for my digression from LH by diverting my Frankenstein to this new thread!

Hey Bunker Hill,

As to the "million miles from..." crack, I plead the shrink's version of the 5th: "It's all part of the big ball of wax...I was just free-associating...nothing is by's all interconnected..." (or is that the quantum physicist's excuse?)


Thanks for the album cover art...yep, that's it.

It's a terrific album for anybody with a remote appreciation of gospel music. According to the liner notes, BH is correct that the group started out as the Jubilaires (baritone Ted Brooks, tenor Jimmy Adams, and basso George McFadden) -- however, lead singer Bill Johnson was "the prime mover" of the [fabulous] Golden Gate Quartet -- the subject of a terrific CD reissue series on Document. I reiterate my position on "Go Where I Send Thee" (#8 on Vol. 1, 1937-38): this is one of the sexiest, rockin'est, syncopatedest, coolest, shivers-causingest, putting-a-smile-on-your-facest vocal performances of all time...and one that required nary a musical instrument (other than 4 voice boxes) to pull off. And no, that's not a trumpet there in the final two reps, and no, Leon Redbone did NOT invent the "mouth tromtone"!

FWIW, the liner notes also state that the Jubilaires sang on the Amos 'n' Andy Show (!), and that the "Jubilee Four" were conceived in the studio when the 4 singers assembled at the studio in advance of the arrival of a soloist whom they were going to back -- and entertained themselves by improvising a few numbers on their own. The engineers liked it and the album was born.

Dr. G


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