Cab Calloway's eccentric personality and wild onstage antics often overshadowed his musical contributions, when in fact, as this superb Columbia sampler demonstrates, the two went hand in hand. On all-time classic tracks like "The Jumpin' Jive," "Reefer Man," and the inexhaustible "Minnie the Moocher," the Hi-Di-Ho man's exuberance and vitality as a performer is grounded by his tight bandleading and the outstanding playing of his orchestra (which, over the years, included such greats as Dizzy Gillespie, Eddie Barefield and Chu Berry).
Cab Calloway was a legendary fireball of talent, whose infectious 'hi-de-hi's', 'ho-de-ho's', scattin' and jivin' became the spirited cry of people wanting to be happy. A truly larger than life figure in American pop culture, immortalized in cartoons and caricatures, Calloway also led one of the greatest bands of the Swing Era. 100 Years later the coolest Swing band around, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, are celebrating the birthday of Calloway with this fantastic album. 11 tracks including 'Minnie The Moocher'…
Hi De Ho is one more of the quick, cheap movies cranked out by Hollywood featuring black entertainers and designed to fill seats in the movie houses for the segregated black audiences of the south and the unofficially but just as segregated theaters everywhere else. Hi De Ho is exceptional in one regard. It features that great showman and entertainer Cab Calloway in his prime and a year before he decided to disband his orchestra because of changing musical tastes. Calloway had a long career, and had become a star by 1930. He sang, moved (not exactly danced), strutted and jived.
One of the great entertainers, Cab Calloway was a household name by 1932, and never really declined in fame. A talented jazz singer and a superior scatter, Calloway's gyrations and showmanship on-stage at the Cotton Club sometimes overshadowed the quality of his always excellent bands.