Taj Mahal to Pay Tribute to the Classics with New Album ‘Savoy’

Videos by American Songwriter

Videos by American Songwriter

Legendary blues player Taj Mahal has announced a new album that will pay tribute to the classics. That LP, Savoy, will drop on April 28.

According to reports, the title of the album comes from the phrase, “Stompin’ at the Savoy,” which is also a swing jazz standard that pays tribute to Harlem’s famous Savoy Ballroom. That’s where his parents met during an Ella Fitzgerald show.

“I heard [the songs on Savoy] as a kid when all of those people who made those musics were alive and speaking to us through the records,” Mahal said in a release. “Those weren’t just records to collect. Those were like listening to your relatives, your uncles, your cousins, your grandparents speaking to you through that medium, the medium of music.”

Announcing the project on social media, the blues player describes Savoy as “pure fun for me and a chance to display my Jazz vocal chops!!”

“Most of all these songs were written during a fantastic watershed of musical ideas and in the times of ‘The Greatest Generation!!'” he added. “My take is ‘no great song left behind!’ Ya dig, what I’m layin’ down??! I’ve had a few other chances to record in this manner and have always enjoyed it when I had the opportunity!”

Savoy includes George Gershwin’s “Summertime,” Louis Jordan and Billy Austin’s “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby,” “Sweet Georgia Brown,” and “Baby It’s Cold Outside,” performed as a duet with Maria Muldaur. The album was produced by John Simon, who has worked with the Band, Janis Joplin, and Leonard Cohen.

Check out the first single from Savoy, “Gee Baby, Ain’t I Good to You,” and the album’s full track list below.

Savoy Track list:

  1. “Stompin’ at the Savoy”
  2. “I’m Just a Lucky So and So”
  3. “Gee Baby, Ain’t I Good To You”
  4. “Summertime”
  5. “Mood Indigo”
  6. “Is You Is or Is You Ain’t My Baby”
  7. “Do Nothin’ Till You Hear From Me”
  8. “Sweet Georgia Brown”
  9. “Baby It’s Cold Outside” (duet with Maria Muldaur)
  10. “Lady Be Good”
  11. “Baby Won’t You Please Come Home”
  12. “Caldonia”
  13. “Killer Joe”
  14. “One for My Baby”

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