Once upon a time (NOW), in a hot and sticky land called New Orleans, there lived a man with magical hands. This guy was a piano wizard, a guy who could play anything from ragtime to funk to the works of 1850s piano guy Louis Moreau Gottschalk. He wrote for film, TV, and theater, eventually winning a prestigious Obie award for his work in the off-Broadway production Nita and Zita. He even plays himself on HBO’s Treme. THE DUDE PLAYS HIMSELF ON AN HBO SERIES. The dude’s name, boys and girls, is Tom McDermott, and Van Dyke Parks is curating a collection of his piano stylings and compositions.
Bamboula they’re calling this collection, and it comes out September 24 on Minky Records. Parks is writing the liner notes, and he describes the album as “flexibly fluent, somehow of one cloth. As a composer, Tom’s compositions each read like a good short story, filled with motifs, anecdotes and suspended sub-plots that all resolve in conclusion. Take it as an ample sampler to the world that lies beyond, in the hands of a master.” McDermott the Master performed as a Duke of Dixieland, circumnavigating the globe, and founded the New Orleans Nightcrawlers brass band. He has recorded 10 albums. So show some respect.