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Slim Gaillard

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Biography

Bulee “Slim” Gaillard (January 4, 1911 or 1916 – February 26, 1991) was an American jazz singer, songwriter, pianist, and guitarist, noted for his scat singing and word play.

Despite record company publicity accounts that Gaillard was born in Santa Clara, Cuba of a Greek father and an Afro-Cuban mother, he was born in Pensacola, Florida to a german immigrant named Theopolous Rothschild and an African-American woman named Liza Gaillard. He grew up in Detroit and moved to New York City in the 1930s.

Gaillard first rose to prominence in the late 1930s as part of Slim & Slam, a jazz novelty act he formed with bassist Slam Stewart. Their hits included “Flat Foot Floogie (with a Floy Floy)”, “Cement Mixer (Puti Puti)” and the hipster anthem, “The Groove Juice Special (Opera in Vout)”. Vout was Gaillard’s private term for the hip argot. The duo perform in the 1941 movie Hellzapoppin’.

A later duo teamed him with bassist Bam Brown. His 1945 session with Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie is notable, both musically and for its relaxed convivial air. In the late forties and early fifties, he frequently opened at Birdland, for such greats as Charlie Parker, Flip Phillips, and Coleman Hawkins. Gaillard could play several instruments, and always managed to turn the performance from hip jazz to comedy: he would play the guitar with his left hand fretting from the top of the neck, or would play credible piano solos with his palms facing up.

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  • Lorirosebrown

    reenee

    22 Feb 2013 Reply
  • Anira_Sugar

    Dean Moriarty sent me here!

    29 Nov 2012 Reply
  • Eyes_Of_Insane

    Jack Kuroac sent me here, Slim Gaillard is just awesome.

    1 Jul 2012 Reply
  • markmumble

    I used to work in the wag club were he was a regular in the late 80's

    4 Feb 2011 Reply
  • EiranCooper

    Can I get a Bourbon-a-rooney!

    4 Dec 2010 Reply
  • sGarrista-

    it may be said that this is fucking awesome

    2 May 2010 Reply
  • SonicGojira

    Nice Kerouac reference kekcfx

    30 Mar 2010 Reply
  • LondonLouis

    Indientally, he appears briefly - but memorably - in the 1986 cult British movie, Absolute Beginners which deals with the rise of teenagers in late 1950s London. He sings briefly in a movie with a Gil Evans soundtrack, and a cast which includes Bowie, Sade, Ray Davies and Mandy Rice-Davies of Profumo scandal fame (you have to be very Britisn and very old to know what I'm talking about there!)

    6 Jan 2010 Reply
  • mandrak2000

    Vote for the Pict' !

    29 Jun 2009 Reply
  • LondonLouis

    Chicken Rhythm is the formal title for the Dirty Rooster reference below. It's very funny.

    27 Jun 2009 Reply
  • on_purpose

    i recommend you to listen to F**k Off (The Dirty Rooster). Hilariously good. The whole song is scating the magic words like he was a chicken. He can't retain laughing in the middle of the song. Awesome.

    3 Feb 2009 Reply
  • LondonLouis

    Always makes me laugh out loud. I seem to remember he turned up decades later in the film, Absolute Beginners. A great survivor.

    9 Dec 2008 Reply
  • kekcfx

    Dean stands in the back, saying, 'God! Yes!' -- and clasping his hands in prayer and sweating. 'Sal, Slim knows time, he knows time.'

    25 May 2008 Reply
  • odjbo

    yip roc...

    12 Jan 2008 Reply
  • Ciacchi

    it's a killa-dilla!

    29 Dec 2007 Reply
  • pdeep

    Solid!

    9 Dec 2006 Reply
  • mbatterham

    586 listeners, he's famous.

    27 Sep 2006 Reply
  • futonsalad

    too late... he was on Roots in the 80s.

    29 May 2006 Reply
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