Saturday, August 21, 2010

Frank Hatchett, "Body Shots" (late 70s?)

This seems to be one of a number of records put out by the obscure "Statler" label to provide soundtrack for dance classes. Frank Hatchett is not actually the recording artist but instead a dancer/choreographer who worked on the kind of Broadway stuff where numbers end with everyone freezing with their arms held out and then they yell "JAZZ!" on the final beat - or at least so I imagine, being deeply unqualified in such matters.

Here's what the liner notes say:

Sensational - that's Frank Hatchett! All across the country he has left his mark. Once you've seen him you're a fan for life. No one works with such electricity and warmth. His highly successful Springfield, Mass. school, The Frank Hatchett School of Performing Arts is a testimonial to his genius. 

Among his outstanding credits are the choreographing of off Broadway musical comedies, including "Reach for the Sky" and "Cartoons", the MacDonald TV Commercial, Black Miss America and Miss Universe. On his International agenda are choreographing for the Queen Elizabeth Hotel night club in Montreal Canada and the musical production of "Frick Frack" in Vienna Austria.

If you can catch him it will be at his school in Springfield or in New York where he teaches at Jo Jo's Dance Factory. 

Neither the Austrian production of the intriguing-sounding "Frick Frack" nor the other shows mentioned seem to have survived in popular imagination long enough to dent the Internet, but I suspect that this may be the McDonald's commercial that he choreographed (gotta have some sympathy for Frank given the portly white dudes he had to work with - okay guys, just uh, just line up in a row and march on the spot would you? okay let's try it one more time). There isn't a lot of information available on-line but Frank seems to be still hard at work and inspiring new generations of jazz dancers.

The music itself is late '70s sounding instrumental jams played by session musos, many of the tracks don't hit the spot but there are a couple of nice grooves, bedroom joint "The Lover In You" and the more up-tempo "Shamballa", presented here for your jazz-dancing pleasure:

Frank Hatchett - Body Shots by doggziller

No comments:

Post a Comment