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Cosimo Matassa Project


Ram Jam Club

Sat 3rd Jun 2017 - 9pm

Cosimo Matassa (1926 - 2014) started J&M Recording Studio in 1945 in the back room of his parents' shop at the junction of Rampart Street and Dumaine in New Orleans. His studios would see legends of R&B pass through their doors such as Little Richard, Ray Charles, Fats Domino, Dr. John, Allen Toussaint and Big Joe Turner.

Many of the records produced at J&M were hugely popular at the time, and the biggest hits sold millions of copies. The reverberations of the J&M output were felt around the world, and heavily influenced the development of many styles - ska and rocksteady in Jamaica, soul and funk in the USA and the British Invasion bands of the 1960s (Paul McCartney's loving evocation of Fats Domino's piano style on 'Lady Madonna' being one notable instance). Arguably Cosimo Matassa and the artists who recorded in his studios set the musical template for popular music for the rest of the 20th century and beyond.

In 2015, a group of musicians in London with a common love for early New Orleans R&B got together to pay homage to Cosimo Matassa and the music that came out of his studios. They thought it would be a lot of fun to transcribe some of the original arrangements from the era, then record the tracks using methods as close to Cosimo Matassa's working practices as they could manage. The songs were recorded and mixed in mono (stereo vinyl records weren't commonly available til 1957). The tracks were recorded live in a space not much bigger than your average living room (J&M was set up in a room only 15 by 16 feet). The master recordings were also sped up a little - this was a common practice when Cosimo Matassa's tapes were transfered to vinyl.

* We are taking bookings only for diner between 6.30-8pm


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