Reason #452 Why The ’80’s Didn’t Suck: Jumpin’ Jive

My favorite Joe Jackson album from his prime period (1979-1982) is Jumpin’ Jive, in which Jackson immerses himself in the swing of Cab Calloway and Louis Jordan. The commitment to authenticity is impressive, and his vocals suit the music well. The tunes he chooses to cover were all fantastic to begin with but he is able to put his own stamp on virtually all of them. The band he chose, doesn’t just swing, they groove, but the best thing about this album, and why it remains my favorite to this day, is that it’s just so damn consistent in tone and quality. Jackson’s albums, especially after 1983, can be inconsistent affairs. Jumpin’ Jive, however, is one genre exercise that works quite well. Well enough that he just did it again, with 2012’s The Duke.

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