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Dr. John: Trippin’ Live

Recorded live at Ronnie Scott’s in London this disc is full of New Orleans anthems-songs like Professor Longhair’s “Tipitina,” Dr. John’s theme song “Right Place Wrong Time,” a medley of Mardi Gras music, a traditional jazz standard and more swampy offerings. It represents a typical, crowd-pleasing Dr. John gig-a greatest hits album of sorts minus being predictable. Dr. John is playing with his working band, filled with Crescent City players. They all dig into the tunes, reinventing them, keeping the music fresh. The demanding percussion duo of Herman Ernest on traps and Smiley Ricks on congas are the ever-funky thunder behind Dr. John’s rolling piano. Saxophonist Alvin “Red” Tyler is often featured, his great warmth pouring out of his horn. This is a must-have album for New Orleans music fans. You can bet they’ll be wearing out this one come Carnival season.

Originally Published