Jimmy Rushing was a short, stout man with a big voice. His nickname was Mister Five-by-Five. He was the sort of guy Donald Trump would fat shame but Jimmy would have laughed it off. He’s best known for his time with Count Basie but worked with a string of Jazz luminaries: Dizzy Gillespie, Benny Goodman, and Dave Brubeck to name a few.
I’d never heard 1955’s Listen to the Blues before, I was attracted to it by Eric Von Schmidt’s cover art. The record is as every bit good as the cover.
A ten inch, six song version of the album was released as Showcase in 1957. It has a swell cover too:
I had to show you a picture of the man himself so here’s the cover of a 1963 album:
Listen to the Blues is only available via the YouTube playlist format. It’s well worth a spin.