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Jazz BBQ: Songs For A Summer Grill

Rib festivals are in full swing. The smell of charcoal-fired delicacies wafts through backyards, beaches, and parks. As long as the weather's warm, why cook indoors? After you slap some barbecue sauce on your menu items of choice — be they meat-based or sculpted out of tofu — it's time to toss everything on the grill, let the fire do its work, and get down with these grill-friendly jazz tunes.

For more entries in this summer's weekly It's Time to Party: Summer Songs series, click here.

Bobby Watson

As a kid, saxophone ace Bobby Watson used to hang out at Wilkes BBQ, his grandparents' barbecue place in Marion, Kan. He must have had a great time there, because his love shines through in the appropriately titled "Wilkes BBQ," which doubles as the lead track from Watson's newest album, From the Heart.

Jack McDuff

Shouts of "Hot Barbeque!" are interspersed through Jack McDuff's good-time jam of the same name. McDuff's organ and George Benson's guitar are enough to keep listeners dancing over to the grill to grab some of their own. Don't get burned.

Kenny Burrell

Vegetarians can ignore the title of "Chitlins con Carne" and just enjoy the music. A bit of Ray Barretto's conga leads the way into jazz-guitar legend Kenny Burrell's classic blues tune.

Jimmy Smith

The well-known organ jam in "Back at the Chicken Shack" is originally found on the album of the same name, but The Very Best -- a compilation of some of Jimmy Smith's best Blue Note Records work -- functions as a good place to find more good grooves.

Dinah Washington

Every good barbecue should wind down with a cold beverage and a bluesy song for singing along. When you're heading for the liquor cabinet, though, don't even think about messing with Dinah Washington's gin. Listen to "Me & My Gin" and you'll know why.

Copyright 2009 90.5 WESA

Shaunna Morrison Machosky