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The Wild Sound of New Orleans: The Complete 'Tousan' Sessions [Import]

Allen ToussaintAudio CD
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)

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Audio CD, Import, 1994 $19.21  
Audio CD, Import, 1994 --  

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As a producer, bandleader, arranger, songwriter, session musician and all-around musical eminence, Allen Toussaint impacted the New Orleans music scene of the Sixties in much the same way that Dave Bartholomew had in the Fifties. Toussaint, in fact, apprenticed under Bartholomew at sessions for such legends as Fats Domino, so it was a seamless transition when the R&B baton passed between ... Read more in Amazon's Allen Toussaint Store

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (June 28, 1994)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Imports
  • ASIN: B000001AZU
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #277,423 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. Whirlaway
2. Happy Times
3. Up The Creek
4. Tim Tam
5. Me And You
6. Bono
7. Java
8. Wham Tousan
9. Nowhere To Go
10. Nashua
11. Po Boy Walk
12. Pelican Parade
13. Chico
14. Back Home Again In Indiana
15. Second Liner
16. Cow Cow Blues
17. Moo Moo
18. Sweettle Pie (Twenty Years Later)
19. You Didn't Know, Did You
20. Up Right
See all 27 tracks on this disc

Editorial Reviews

From the German-based Bear Family Records reissue label comes over two-dozen selections by a young Allen Toussaint (piano) during his earliest outings as a solo artist -- albeit under the slightly truncated nom de plume of "A. Tousan" or simply "Tousan." Although he'd been gigging and sitting in on a variety of Crescent City R&B sessions, it was RCA Records' Danny Kessler who took the initiative to book studio time for Toussaint. That very first endeavor -- held on January 29, 1958 -- featured Toussaint supported by other Nola locals Alvin "Red" Taylor (baritone sax), Nat Perrilliat (tenor sax), or Lee Allen (tenor sax), either Justin Adams (guitar) or Roy Montrell (guitar), Frank Fields (bass), and Charles "Hungry" Williams (drums). While the exact lineup may not be certain, what is undeniable is the masterful energy of these seminal sides. Toussaint revealed to a reviewer that he "had no involvement in the titles of the songs. When I played them, I referred to them as 'Song Number One,' 'Song Number Two' and so on. It wasn't until the record came out that I was informed Kessler had chosen to name each piece after a different racehorse." Once "Whirlaway" b/w the raucous sacred-inspired "Happy Times" scored favorable results, Kessler hit Toussaint up for enough material to compile what would become the full-length Wild Sound of New Orleans (1958) LP. Arguably the best-known of the instrumental lot is the perky "Java" -- which Al Hirt (trumpet) was able to take to the top of the pop singles survey, not to mention carve out a nice career for himself in the process. Other entries worthy of multiple spins include the mile-a-minute "Tim Tam," "Bono," and the musical Mardi Gras that is "Nashua" -- which owes much to Professor Longhair and points the way for Toussaint's future musical aspirations. Similarly, "Wham Tousan" and "Pelican Parade" are evidence of Toussaint's already fully formed keyboard style. The second half of the Complete "Tousan" Sessions (1992) is dedicated to tracks destined for the Seville imprint and credited to "Al Tousan and His Piano." Of the 15 tunes documented during the December 7 and 8, 1959 session only a handful were ever released. Namely, the 45s "Chico" b/w "Sweetie Pie," "Naomi" b/w "Back Home Again in Indiana" -- a rare cover tune for Toussaint, "A Blue Mood" b/w "Moo Moo" (aka "Cow Cow Boogie"), and "Real Churchy" b/w "Twenty Years Later." Interestingly, the latter is nothing more than a recycled and abbreviated edit of the aforementioned "Sweetie Pie." The remainder make their debut and in true Bear Family style are thoroughly annotated in the 20-page liner notes booklet. ~ Lindsay Planer, All Music Guide

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great music that brings joy to the soul... October 12, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
If one was allowed to have only 10 CDs and no more, this would have to be one of them. The fresh, clean and raw talent of an early Allen Toussaint (circa late 1950's) cuts like a knife and makes any listener a lover of New Orleans/Toussaint music.
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22 of 24 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars If you like rhythm and blues you will like this. October 1, 1998
Format:Audio CD
One can't not like this album. The only question is just how much you'll love it. This is very up-beat music. Maybe I should just tell you a true story that will indicate my love of Allen Toussaint's music.
I first heard "Whirlaway" in 1958 while lying in an Army hospital bed, very ill. I wanted that song and it took me 40 years of searching before I found it. Is that liking a song or what? I have it now and out of 27 tracks on this disc there isn't one I don't like.
This is "feel good" music with a piquant creole flavor that could only have come from New Orleans and a great talent like Allen Toussaint.
Thanks Allen, Gary
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you, Mr. Allen Toussaint August 20, 2010
Format:Audio CD
Long time ago Husband and I borrowed this LP from a friend and fell in love with it. Too bad. Friend had bought it while in Navy in New Orleans. We never forgot the name "Wild Sounds by Tousan" because we hunted everywhere for it to no avail. Fast forward 20 years later: I visited New Orleans with a friend. While she "conversed" with her friend in our hotel room, I investigated our area way out on Charles Blvd. We had no car so I just went for a walk. Upon finding this cute little record shop far from any other stores, I mozied in and began to browse. The little old man who owned the shop asked me if I was looking for anything in particular. I asked about our favorite album of all time. "Funny you asked about that album......Do you know that this album was made and produced in such a hurry that they didn't even spell Allen Toussaint's name properly. I just happen to have the last one made." He went on about A T's popularity and how proud they all are of their native son. He didn't charge any extra. We cherished it until it "came up missing" after several moves.
You can't imagine how pleased I am to finally find another copy now. Husband has been gone for 10 years, but his memory, his moves as he danced, his smile as he tapped to the beat of each song will make my heart thump with delight when I play this precious compilation of Mr. Allen Toussaint's.
Thank you for enriching our musical life, Judie
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5.0 out of 5 stars Lively Instrumentals from 1958-59 June 16, 2014
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
The operative word here is: Fun! On these recordings from sessions in 1958 and 1959, along with four singles recorded from 1960 to 1963, a very young Allen Toussaint displays his prowess on the keyboards with a lively, vivacious set of instrumental compositions. If you're a fan of this legendary artist/writer/producer, you NEED to hear these amazing early recordings. Listening to these tunes, you can't help but smile and shout "Yeah!"

From reading the liner notes, it sounds like Toussaint was "ambivalent" about these recordings:

"I liked a lot of things in the sessions was unfocused as far as being focused on a market. It was very innocent ... The big difference is all this is instrumental. Once I think 'words', everything changes."

So, yeah, you aren't going to hear "songs' such as "Southern Nights" or "Working in a Coalmine," but these instrumentals sizzle nonetheless. The CD comes with a 20-page booklet that includes vintage photos of the young pianist and his sidemen, along with notes on these historic sessions. Music that still sounds fresh and vibrant!
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good New Orleans vibes! June 3, 2011
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
A great overview of Allen's talent with many catchy jazz tunes. I've heard of him in the past, but never had an album. This will be excellent for background listening at a gathering of friends!
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