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A Birth of Jazz

A YouTube History of Music

Early Jazz 1

Ragtime - Bands - Horn

Group & Last Name Index to Full History:


Tracks are listed in chronological order by year, then alphabetically.

Listings do not reflect proper order by month or day: later oft precedes earlier.

Not on this page? See history tree below.



Henry Red Allen    Louis Armstrong    Gus Arnheim

Buster Bailey    Smith Ballew    Sidney Bechet    Bix Beiderbecke    Rube Bloom    Buddy Bolden    Geraldo Bright
California Ramblers    Benny Carter    Spencer Clark    Bill Coleman    Doc Cook
Meyer Davis    Johnny Dodds    Clyde Doerr
James Reese Europe
Ted Fio Rito    The Five Pennies
Jan Garber    Jean Goldkette
Fletcher Henderson    Tal Henry    Art Hickman    Claude Hopkins    Hotsy Totsy Gang    Paul Howard    Spike Hughes
Bunk Johnson    Charlie Johnson    Isham Jones
Roger Wolfe Kahn    Hal Kemp    Freddie Keppard    Andy Kirk    Manny Klein
Ted Lewis    Guy Lombardo    Louisiana Five    Abe Lyman
Wingy Manone    Charlie Margulis    Jimmy McPartland    Mezz Mezzrow    Irving Mills    Miff Mole    Bennie Moten    Turk Murphy
New Orleans Rhythm Kings    Red Nichols    Jimmie Noone
King Oliver    Original Dixieland Jazz Band    Kid Ory
Hot Lips Page    Tiny Parham    Sid Phillips    Ben Pollack
The Ramblers    Don Redman    Adrian Rollini    Luis Russell    Pee Wee Russell
Noble Sissle    Jabbo Smith    Muggsy Spanier    Wilbur Sweatman
Erskine Tate    Jack Teagarden    Frank Trumbauer
Vendome Orchestra
Fred Waring    Washboard Rhythm Kings    Anson Weeks    Ted Weems    Paul Whiteman    Fess Williams    Spiegle Willcox
Victor Young



Featured on this page loosely in order of first recording if not record release (as possible).

Names are alphabetical, not chronological, per year:



Buddy Bolden

1903 Wilbur Sweatman
1913 James Reese Europe
1916 Meyer Davis   
1917 Ted Lewis    Original Dixieland Jazz Band    Noble Sissle
1918 Louisiana Five
1919 Clyde Doerr    Ted Fio Rito    Art Hickman    Miff Mole
1920 Isham Jones    Andy Kirk    Adrian Rollini    Paul Whiteman
1921 Buster Bailey    Fletcher Henderson    Charlie Johnson    Frank Trumbauer
1922 Gus Arnheim    California Ramblers    Jan Garber    Abe Lyman    New Orleans Rhythm Kings    Kid Ory    Don Redman
1923 Louis Armstrong    Smith Ballew    Sidney Bechet    Johnny Dodds    Freddie Keppard    Bennie Moten    Red Nichols    Jimmie Noone    King Oliver    Ben Pollack    Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra    Fred Waring    Spiegle Willcox
1924 Bix Beiderbecke    Rube Bloom    Benny Carter    Doc Cook    Jean Goldkette    Paul Howard    Hal Kemp    Guy Lombardo    Wingy Manone    Pee Wee Russell    Muggsy Spanier    Ted Weems
1925 Roger Wolfe Kahn    Jimmy McPartland    Irving Mills    Fess Williams
1926 Charlie Margulis    Spencer Clark    Tiny Parham    The Five Pennies    Luis Russell    Jabbo Smith    Victor Young
1927 Henry Red Allen    Claude Hopkins    Mezz Mezzrow    Sid Phillips
1928 Tal Henry    Hotsy Totsy Gang    Manny Klein    Jack Teagarden
1929 Bill Coleman    Spike Hughes    Hot Lips Page    The Ramblers    Anson Weeks
1930 Washboard Rhythm Kings
1932 Claude Hopkins
1933 Geraldo Bright
1936 Turk Murphy
1942 Bunk Johnson



"Jazz" (or jass) was a sexual term. Both Webster's and the Oxford Dictionary of Music estimate its origin as of 1913. Its deeper roots may be purveyed by timeline at Jazz In America. It's beginnings are of two main stems (musically speaking): the one arises out of ragtime in New Orleans, with strong Creole and black influence. The other heralds largely from Chicago, also a transformation of ragtime, before moving onward to Harlem, St. Louis, Kansas City, etc.. New Orleans is generally considered the heart of jazz (come trumpet), where many musicians began their careers before merging with the Chicago limb (come sax). (This is true of the blues and boogie woogie as well, the Mississippi Delta the deep home of the blues, musicians often migrating to Chicago to join the blues scene there. Boogie woogie, the southern equivalent of ragtime, originated in eastern Texas, likely Marshall, about forty miles from Shreveport, Louisiana.) Though New York City was the third major hub of jazz, it is Hollywood that wielded the greater influence on the public due to film. (The importance of film to any of the American musical genres be here emphasized. It is Hollywood where country becomes country western. It is Hollywood where jazz (classical as well) gets popularized. It is Hollywood that emphasizes dance in early rock & roll. Of all the major American musical genres perhaps the blues most eluded the influence of Hollywood.)


  New Orleans is where Buddy Bolden, considered by many to be the father of jazz, transformed ragtime into jass and blues. Born in New Orleans in 1877, Buddy Bolden was the king of horn too early for recording, but he played with many jazz musicians who held his abilities in high esteem when jazz was only beginning to be called jass. Bolden had his own band in New Orleans for about seven years before being committed, in 1907, to a mental institution, at age thirty, for dementia praecox (schizophrenia). There he remained until his death in 1931. Jelly Roll Morton's 'Buddy Bolden's Blues', based on Bolden's theme song, 'Funky Butt', can be found in A Birth of the Blues. The Baby Dodds Trio also does a version in Early Jazz 3. Among musicians on this page of personal experience with Bolden are Louis Armstrong, Freddie Keppard, King Oliver, Kid Ory and Bunk Johnson.

Jelly Roll Morton   1939

   Buddy Bolden's Blues

Baby Dodds   1946

   Buddy Bolden Blues

     Baby Dodds Trio

      Clarinet: Albert Nicholas   Piano: Don Ewell


Birth of Jazz: Buddy Bolden

Buddy Bolden

Source: Off Beat


Birth of Jazz: Wilbur Sweatman

Wilbur Sweatman

Source: Berresford Rare Records

Born in 1882 in Brunswick, Missouri,, bandleader Wilbur Sweatman began his music career just before the turn of the century, touring with circus bands. He was age 19 when in 1901 he formed his first band. In 1903 or '04 Sweatman produced a cylinder of 'Maple Leaf Rag' (Scott Joplin) for Metropolitan Music Stores. He also made one titled 'Peaceful Henry' (Edward Harry Kelly). A clarinetist, he also played in minstrels and vaudeville before cutting his first ragtime recordings for Electra in December of 1916, two takess each of 'Hawaiian Sunshine' and  'Down Home Rag' in two sessions, those with, respectively, the Emerson String Orchestra and Emerson String Trio. The next year Sweatman began recording for Pathe with his Jass Band. In two sessions estimated in April or so Sweatman recorded six tracks, among them 'Dance and Grow Thin' and 'Dancing an American Rag'. Swetman issued above ten titles in both 1918 and '19. Issues from 1919 alone exceeded 1,000,000 copies. Thenceforward, however, he issued only slightly over ten titles throughout the twenties. He was thought be a bit old-fashioned, more at novelty rag than progressive jazz. Tom Lord's discography has Sweatman recording as late as two sessions on March 26 and 27, 1935, for Vocalion: 'Battleship Kate', 'The Florida Blues', 'Watcha Gonna Do' and 'The Hooking Cow Blues'. Among who played in Sweatman's band during its career were Duke Ellington, Cozy Cole and Coleman Hawkins. Though Sweatman may have been able to live on royalties alone he later worked as a booking agent and music publisher. Sweatman died in NYC, having lived in Harlem, in 1961.

Wilbur Sweatman   1916

   Down Home Rag

Wilbur Sweatman   1918

   Bluin' the Blues

   Dallas Blues

   Goodbye Alexander

   Has Anybody Seen My Corinne

   Ringtail Blues

   Hello, Hello!

   Kansas City Blues


Wilbur Sweatman   1924

   Battleship Kate

Wilbur Sweatman   1926

   Get It Now/Poor Papa

      With the Dixie Trio



Born in 1880, the earliest jazz bandleader to play at Carnegie Hall was James Reese Europe and his Clef Club Orchestra in 1912. Though not quite a jazz band at the time, his was a ragtime orchestra that over a period of several years would embrace early jazz. After Europe's appearance at Carnegie Hall he changed the name of his band to the Society Orchestra and, with the assistance of dancers Irene and Vernon Castle, helped introduce the foxtrot to the American public. (More on the foxtrot below under the Louisiana Five.) Europe first recorded in 1913 with the Victor Talking Machine Company. He was also well-known as the leader of the army band, the Hellfighters, during World War I. But peacetime was more dangerous for Europe than wartime, as in November of 1919 one of his drummers, Herbert Wright, stabbed him in the neck, killing him, having become impassioned during a conversation with Europe concerning his treatment of band members.

James Europe   1913

   Too Much Mustard

James Europe   1914

   Castle House Rag

James Europe   1919

   How You Gonna Keep 'Em Down On the Farm


Birth of Jazz: James Reese Europe

James Reese Europe

Source: Red Hot Jazz

  Bandleader Meyer Davis formed his first band in 1915. That became the band at the Chevy Chase Lake amusement park the next year. Davis is documented to have made his first recordings in 1916 as well: 'The Old Brick House', 'Pua I Mohala' and two versions of 'On the Beach at Waikiki'. Unfortunately nothing earlier than 1925 could be found at YouTube. Davis made a long career of supplying entertainment to country clubs and hotels on the East Coast. His bands also performed at several Presidential inaugural balls. Though not currently well known, Davis' career stretched six decades until his death in 1976.

Meyer Davis   1925

   All Aboard for Heaven

   Bye and Bye


   Let It Rain Let It Pour

   Stop Flirting

Meyer Davis   1929

   Am I A Passing Fancy?

   Miss You

Meyer Davis   1930


   It Seems To Be Spring

Meyer Davis   1933

   Did You Ever See A Dream Walking

   Heat Wave

   Keep Young and Beautiful


Birth of Jazz: Meyer Davis

Meyer Davis

Photo: University of Maine

Source: Travalanche

  Born Theodore Leopold Friedman in 1890 in Circleville, Ohio, clarinetist and vocalist Ted Lewis first recorded in 1917 with the Earl Fuller Jass Band. His first releases with Fuller were 'Slippery Hank' and 'Yah-De-Dah' from a session on June 4 in New York City. By 1919 Lewis had his own band and a recording contract with Columbia, largely to take on the enormously popular Original Dixieland Jass Band recording for Victor. By the latter twenties Lewis' band had come to rival Paul Whiteman's claim to audience. His first issues with his own band were 'Wond'ing' and 'Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me' from a session on October 1, 1919. Lewis began to appear in films in 1929, adopting his trademark top hat (to become exhausted) about that time. He and his band performed well into the sixties, including Las Vegas. Lewis died in 1971 of lung failure. His signature song had been the vaudeville tune, 'Me and My Shadow', composed in 1927 by Billy Rose and Dave Dreyer. Though famously finishing performances with 'Me and My Shadow', the only known recording of that by Lewis of which we know was for an album cut or issued in July 1956 (RKO Records ULP-143 and Unique Records LP 108). The earliest tracks below are Lewis on clarinet, vocals not a lot later. All tracks for 1917 below are with the Earl Fuller Jass Band.

Ted Lewis   1917

  Coon Band Contest

  Lil' Liza Jane/One-Step

  Old Grey Mare

  Slippery Hank


Ted Lewis   1919

   Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me

   2nd recording issued as a bandleader

Ted Lewis   1920

   Fair One

  The Hula Blues

Ted Lewis   1922

   Hot Lips

Ted Lewis   1924

   June Night

Ted Lewis   1925

   Milenberg Joys

  O, Katharina!

Ted Lewis   1926

   Some of These Days

    Vocal: Sophie Tucker 

  New Saint Louis Blues

  When My Baby Smiles at Me

Ted Lewis   1927

   Alexanders Ragtime Band

  The Darktown Strutter's Ball

Ted Lewis   1928

   Clarinet Marmalade

  King for a Day

Ted Lewis   1929

   Farewell Blues

  Is Everybody Happy?

Ted Lewis   1930

   Aunt Hagar's Blues

  On the Sunny Side of the Street

Ted Lewis   1931

 Dallas Blues

    Piano & vocal: Fats Waller

  Dip Your Brush In Sunshine

  Egyptian Ella

  Happiness Remedy

  I'm Crazy Bout My Baby

    Piano & vocal: Fats Waller

  Just A Gigolo

  Royal Garden Blues

   Piano & vocal: Fats Waller

Ted Lewis   1933


Ted Lewis   1934

  Happiness Ahead

Ted Lewis   1956

  Me And My Shadow


Birth of Jazz: Wilbur Sweatman

Ted Lewis

Source: Wkikwand

Birth of Jazz: Dixieland Jazz Band

Original Dixieland Jazz Band

Source: Riverwalk Jazz

It was about the time of World War I that ragtime made the major shift form jass to jazz (albeit slightly sooner in the South, such as New Orleans). Among the earliest to record jazz was the Original Dixieland Jazz Band (Original Dixieland Jass Band), its first release in 1917 with 'Livery Stable Blues'. The same year they appeared in the silent film, 'The Good for Nothing'. By 1919 the band was plenty popular to head to London where they also recorded. The next year they began touring the United States until 1924. Despite their name, the Dixieland Jazz Band was formed in Chicago. Pianist J Russell Robinson was the band's main composer. The group dissolved in 1925, upon a nervous breakdown by cornetist and leader Nick La Rocca, but reshaped later versions of the band until 1946.

Original Dixieland Jazz Band   1917

   Livery Stable Blues

   Darktown Strutter's Ball

   Original Dixieland One Step

Original Dixieland Jazz Band   1918

   Clarinet Marmalade Blues

Original Dixieland Jazz Band   1920



Original Dixieland Jazz Band   1921

   Jazz Me Blues

Original Dixieland Jazz Band   1923

   Some Of These Days


  Born in 1889 in Indianapolis, Noble Sissle, bandleader and vocalist, had sung in a couple quartets during and after graduating from high school. He would De Pauw University in Greencastle, Indiana, on scholarship and Butler University in Indianapolis. Sissle had formed his first band by 1915 to perform at the Severin Hotel in Indianapolis. He is perhaps most famous for his partnership with Eubie Blake early in his career. Blake and Sissle first worked together in 1915 in Baltimore in Joe Porter's Serenaders. They collaborated as songwriters, their first being 'It's All Your Fault'. Sissle's first known recording may have included Blake on piano, that about April of 1917 under the direction of Domenico Savino: 'Mammy's Little Choc'late Cullud Chile' (Pathe cylinder 20210), composed by Sissle and orchestrated by Blake. Sissle recorded several more tunes with Pathe in 1917 before joining James Europe's 369th Regimental Band in 1918 as a violinist, vocalist and forming member, they having joined the U.S. Army together during World War I. After the War Europe and Sissle made more recordings until Sissle formed another songwriting partnership with Eubie Blake, also performing vaudeville together as the Dixie Duo. Tom Lord's discography has them recording again circa December, 1919, on 'I'm Just Simply Full of Jazz' and 'Ain't Cha Coming Back, Mary Ann, to Marylnd?'. In 1923 the pair starred in a couple of Lee DeForest's Phonofilms titled 'Noble Sissle and Eubie Blake' and 'Sissle and Blake Sing Snappy Songs'. Sissle released recordings steadily throughout his career, many occurring in England in 1925-26 and 1928-30. Sissle gave Lena Horne one of the big breaks of her early career by hiring her to tour with his orchestra circa 1936. During World War II Sissle entertained troops in Europe. He played at Eisenhower's inauguration in 1953. Lord's discography has Blake and Sissle recording together again in 1958 and 1969. Sissle died in Tampa, FL, in 1975 after working as a disc jockey.

Noble Sissle   1919

   Broadway Hit Medley

      With James Reese Europe

Noble Sissle   1921

   Crazy Blues

      Piano: Eubie Blake

Noble Sissle   1923

   Downhearted Blues

      Piano: Eubie Blake

   Waitin' for the Evenin' Mail

      Piano: Eubie Blake

Noble Sissle   1929

   Camp Meeting Day

   Kansas City Kitty


   Mr. Moon I'm Crooning a Tune About June

Noble Sissle   1930

   Sunny Sunflower Land

   You Can't Get To Heaven That Way

Noble Sissle   1931

   Little White Lies/Happy Feet

      Pathetone performance

Noble Sissle   1933

   St. Louis Blues

Noble Sissle   1936

   I Take to You/Rhythm Of The Broadway Moon

      Vocal: Lena Horne

Noble Sissle   1938

   Viper Mad (Pleasure Mad)


Birth of Jazz: Noble Sissle

Noble Sissle

Photo: Carl Van Vechten

Source:: Wikiwand

Birth of Jazz: Louisiana Five

Louisiana Five

Photo: Collection of Eugene Nunez

Source: Wikimedia Commons


The Louisiana Five originated in New York City. Their first recording was in 1918, but the group would disband in 1920.  Drummer Anton Lada was the groups leader. The other members were pianist Joe Cawley, trombonist Charlie Panelli, banjoist Karl Berger and clarinetist Alcide "Yellow" Nunez. Like many of the musicians on this page, one of the reasons for the popularity of such as the Dixieland Jazz Band and the Louisiana Five was dancing, such as the foxtrot. Thus a few words as to ballroom dancing are due at the fore of this history. Ballroom dancing (ballet as well, for that matter) had been around since the 16th century. Many have heard of the minuet, popular especially with the French nobility in the 17th and 18th centuries. In the early 19th century came the waltz as formal dance spread from palaces to the general population. The waltz remains popular to this day (as well as the tango, originating in Argentina at about the same time). But the waltz never gained the popularity of the foxtrot, notable in association with ragtime. The invention of the foxtrot is often credited to vaudeville actor, Harry Fox, in 1914. The dance was also introduced to the American public by ballroom dancers Irene and Vernon Castle about the same time. Much the way that swing jazz and early rock and roll would later provoke dancing (: the jitterbug and the twist, respectively), so was ragtime popular not only for listening, but dancing as well. Music that compelled movement was a large portion of ragtime. As ragtime transitioned into jazz so went the foxtrot, to become phenomenally popular throughout the next few decades. All to say that the foxtrot wasn't lost on musicians from King Oliver to Paul Whiteman to Jelly Roll Morton to Rudy Vallee: melody was one thing;  inspiring people to shake a limb was another. This goes without saying with most forms of music, yet mention of the foxtrot is fairly requisite to any history, even one so condensed as this, of latter ragtime or early jazz.

Louisiana Five   1919

   Alcoholic Blues

   Ringtail Blues

   Clarinet Squawk

   Yelping Hound Blues


Birth of Jazz: Harry Fox

Harry Fox

Foxtrot Initiator

Source: Wikipedia


Birth of Jazz: Irene and Vernon Fox

Irene & Vernon Castle

Foxtrot Initiators

Source: Ballroom Chick


Birth of Jazz: Clyde Doerr

Clyde Doerr

Source: Vitaphone Varieties

Saxophone player Clyde Doerr studied violin by day at the King Conservatory in San Jose and cruised the watering holes by night, the latter which convinced him that it was the saxophone he ought pursue. Though after graduation he had worked as a conductor he began his career in jazz as a member of a combo at the Techau Tavern in San Francisco. Doerr first recorded in 1919 with the Art Hickman Orchestra. (In the sample below he is indistinguishable, joining Bert Ralton, also on sax. But he is in the band.) His first releases as a bandleader occurred in 1921. It's said that Doerr quit the music business about 1939 because he was plain wearing out. He first studied chiropractics for four years, then found employment as a grinder in a factory, after which he began selling real estate.

Clyde Doerr   1919

   Rose of Mandalay

      With the Art Hickman Orchestra

Clyde Doerr   1921

   Dapper Dan

   The Sheik

Clyde Doerr   1922

   I Wish I Knew



   Swanee Smiles

   When the Leaves Come Tumbling Down

Clyde Doerr   1927

   What Do We Do On A Dew Dew Dewey Day

   You Can't Cry Over My Shoulder

   You Sing That Song To Somebody Else

Clyde Doerr   1928

   The Yale Blues



Birth of Jazz: Theodore Fiorito

Ted Fio Rito

Source: Wikiwand

Born Teodorico Salvatore Fiorito in 1900 in Newark, New Jersey, Ted Fio Rito, pianist, bandleader and composer, is thought to have first recorded i January of 1919 with an ensemble led by Harry Yerkes called the Novelty Five. That tune was 'Bo-la-bo' for the Little Wonder label. Fio Rito appeared on numerous recordings with Yerkes well into 1920, the same year he began to record with both the Green Brothers Jazz Band and the Happy Six. Fio Rito began to gain attention at age 21 when his tune 'Toot, Toot, Tootsie' was used in the musical, 'Bombo', by Al Jolson. Upon embellishment and the addition of lyrics that composition would become something of the banner tune of the Roaring Twenties. (See  91 years of 'Toot Toot Tootsie' at Early Jazz 2.) That same year Fio Rito joined a band led by Dan Russo, of which he became co-leader the following year, the Oriole (Terrace) Orchestra, playing at the Oriole Terrace in Detroit. They also recorded in 1922, their first issue 'Oriole Blues' recorded in June. Fio Rito's composition, 'Soothing', had been recorded the previous month by the All Star Trio; All Star Trio Orchestra. In February of '24 Ampico issued Fio Rito's piano roll performance of 'Sleep'. The meanwhile he and Russo continued leading the Oriole Orchestra, Russo leaving in 1928, after which Fio Rito took the ensemble on tour, renaming it the Edgewater Beach Hotel Orchestra upon ending up at the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco. His first releases with that orchestra occurred the same year in 1929. Fio Rito's claim to fame was largely via radio in the thirties. Though his popularity diminished in the forties he continued to perform in Chicago, Arizona and Las Vegas until his death in 1971 in Scottsdale.

Ted Fio Rito   1919

   Easy Pickin's

      With Harry Yerkes' Novelty Five

     Thought to be Fio Rito's 2nd recording

Ted Fio Rito   1923


Ted Fio Rito   1924


   That Lullaby Strain

Ted Fio Rito   1925


Ted Fio Rito   1929

   Hangin' On A Garden Gate

      Vocals: The Mariners

   On Candle Light

      Vocal: Dusty Rhodes

   Then You've Never Been Blue

Ted Fio Rito   1932


   Willow Weep For Me

      Vocal: Muzzy Marcellino

Ted Fio Rito   1934

   Blue Moon

   Freckle Face, You're Beautiful

   I'll String Along With You

   You Were Foolin'

Ted Fio Rito   1935

   You're All I Need

Ted Fio Rito   1936

   Every Minute Of the Hour


Ted Fio Rito   1937

   Vieni Vieni

Ted Fio Rito   1939

   How Strange

Ted Fio Rito   1942

   Sweet Sue

      Film: 'Rhythm Parade'

Ted Fio Rito   1950?

   Toot-Toot-Tootsie Goodbye

      Vocal: Joy Lane


  Born in 1886, bandleader Art Hickman, also a drummer and pianist, was among the first to expand the small dance band (typically a quintet or sextet) into a full dance orchestra. Begun as a sextet in 1913 (or so thought), by 1915 Hickman had 21 members in his band. Like Paul Whiteman below, Hickman's was among the first to transition from a dance band, typically playing in hotels, toward a jazz band, thereat originating what is oft referred to as a "sweet" band, that is, jazz to which to dance. (Good later examples of a "sweet" band are the swing orchestras of Benny Goodman or Sammy Kaye.) Hickman played in the 1920 and 1926 editions of the Ziegfeld Follies. He died of Banti's syndrome in 1930.

Art Hickman   1919

   Along the Way to Damascus

   The Hesitating Blues

   On the Streets of Cairo


   Sweet and Low

   Wonderful Pal

Art Hickman   1920


   The Love Nest


   I Wish I Could Make It So

   Tell Me Little Gypsy


Art Hickman   1921

   Now and Then

Art Hickman   1925

   Twilight the Stars And You

Art Hickman   1927

   I'll Just Go Along


Birth of Jazz: Art Hickman

Art Hickman

Source: Discogs

  Born in 1898 in Roosevelt, New York, dixieland trombonist Miff Mole, bandleader of the Molers, likely first recorded as a member of the Original New Orleans Jazz Band circa March, 1919. Those tracks for Gennett were 'Ja-Da Medley' and 'He's Had No Lovin' for a Long, Long Time'. Mole next backed Leona Williams (not to be confused with the later C&W singer) on six tunes in three sessions in 1922 before his first tracks with the Original Memphis Five recorded in April 1922: 'Gypsy Blues' and 'My Honey's Lovin' Arms'. Mole was in big demand backing countless groups and musicians in the twenties, including Ladd's Black Aces, Jazzbo's Carolina Serenaders, the Ambassadors, Sam Lanin, the Cotton Pickers, Bailey's Lucky Seven, Ray Miller, the Hottentots, Lou Gold, Perry's Hot Dogs and Roger Wolfe Kahn. Mole played alongside Red Nichols on cornet or trumpet in many of those groups: Bailey's Lucky Seven, Sam Lanin, the Cotton Pickers, the Hottentots and Lou Gold. Mole also recorded with Red Nichols' Red Heads in November of '25, issuing 'Fallen Arches', 'Nervous Charlie' and 'Headin' for Louisville'. Mole began working in radio in 1927, first WOR in New York City, then NBC until 1938. He then joined Paul Whiteman's orchestra for a couple of years, followed by working with Benny Goodman until 1943. Mole performed largely in Chicago after that, until 1954. He died in 1961 in NYC.

Miff Mole   1919

   He's Had No Lovin'

      With the Original New Orleans Jazz Band

     Mole's 3rd recording

   Ja-Da Medley

      With the Original New Orleans Jazz Band

     1 of 2 takes thought to be Mole's 1st recordings

Miff Mole   1922

   Cuddle Up

      With the Original Memphis Five

Miff Mole   1923

   Back O' Town Blues

      With the Cotton Pickers

   Rampart Street Blues

      With the Cotton Pickers

Miff Mole   1924

   I've Got a Cross-Eyed Papa

      With Sophie Tucker

Miff Mole   1925

   Bass Ale Blues

   Military Mike

   Throw Down Blues

Miff Mole   1926

   How Could Red Riding Hood

      Cornet: Red Nichols

   She Knows Her "Onions"

      Cornet: Red Nichols

Miff Mole   1927

   After You've Gone

      With Sophie Tucker

   Nobody Cares For Me

      With Sophie Tucker

   All By My Ownsome

      With Roger Wolfe Kahn and His Orchestra

   Feelin' No Pain

   Honolulu Blues

      Guitar: Eddie Lang

   I Ain't Got Nobody

      Vocal: Sophie Tucker

   My Gal Sal

      Guitar: Eddie Lang

   The New Twister

      Cornet: Red Nichols

Miff Mole   1928

   Cream In My Coffee


   You Took Advantage of Me

   You're The Cream In My Coffee

Miff Mole   1929

   After You've Gone

      Clarinet: Jimmy Dorsey

   That's a Plenty

      Cornet: Red Nichols

Miff Mole   1930

   Strut Miss Lizzie

      With Irving Mills & his Hotsy Totsy Gang


Birth of Jazz: Miff Mole

Miff Mole

Photo: William P. Gottlieb

Source: Wikipedia

  Bandleader Isham Jones grew up in a mining family in Michigan to trade coal for tenor saxaphone. Born in 1894, he put together his first orchestra in 1911. His first slew of recordings in 1920 for Brunswick were unsuccessful until he struck ore with 'Wabash Blues' in latter 1921, which sold a million records and stayed No. 1 on the charts for six weeks. Jones recorded prolifically during his career. Though he worked little with musicians beyond members of his orchestra, he backed both Bing Crosby and the Three X Sisters on tracks in 1932. Clarinetist, Woody Herman, was a member of Jones' band in the mid thirties. Jones died in 1956 of cancer in Hollywood, Florida.

Isham Jones   1920

   Alice Blue Gown


Isham Jones   1921

   Do You Ever Think of Me

   Make Believe

   Siren Of A Southern Sea

Isham Jones   1923

   Wabash Blues

   Easy Melody

   Henpecked Blues

   In The Land Of Shady Palm Trees

   Oh! Harold

   Who's Sorry Now

Isham Jones   1924

   The Blue Room

   I'll See You In My Dreams

   It Had to Be You

   Never Again

   Nobody's Sweetheart

   Tell Me, Dreamy Eyes

Isham Jones   1925

   I Love My Baby

   My Best Girl

   The Original Charleston

Isham Jones   1926

   Thinking of You

Isham Jones   1930

   I'll Be Blue Just Thinking Of You

   In My Heart It's You

   Not a Cloud In the Sky

   Swinging Down the Lane

   What's the Use?

Isham Jones   1932

   Always In My Heart

   I Can't Believe It's True

   I'm So Afraid Of You

   Those Gentlemen From Georgia

Isham Jones   1933

   It's Swell to Dream

   Just Born to Be Lonesome


Isham Jones   1947

   On the Alamo

      Vocal: Curt Massey


Birth of Jazz: Isham Jones

Isham Jones

Source: Second Hand Songs


Born in 1898 in Newport, Kentucky, sax player Andy Kirk released his first recordings with Clouds of Joy in 1929. Raised in Denver, Kirk began playing professionally in the band of George Morrison, he found on Morrison's issue of 'I Know Why' in 1920, recorded in NYC. Kirk also performed in Terrence Holder's band called the Dark Clouds of Joy, which Kirk changed to Clouds of Joy upon assuming leadership in 1928. Pianist Mary Lou Williams was an original member of that twelve-piece band which played their first gigs in Kansas City (relocated from Dallas). She is found with Kirk on the first tracks he laid with his Clouds of Joy in September of '29: 'Mess-a-Stomp', 'Blue Clarinet Stomp' (two takes) and 'Cloudy'. Kirk recorded steadily with one version or another of his orchestra into latter 1946, though they issued tracks as late as '49 and '56. Among releases in '56 was the album, 'A Mellow Bit of Rhythm' (reissued as 'Clouds from the Southwest' the same year). Though Kirk thereafter remained professionally active he had to take employment as a hotel manager as well, also working in real estate. Kirk died in 1992 in NYC.

Andy Kirk   1929

   I Know Why

     With George Morrison

     Kirk's 1st recording issued

Andy Kirk   1929

   Blue Clarinet Stomp

   Casey Jones Special


   Corky Stomp

   Froggy Bottom

   Lotta Sax Appeal

   Somepin' Slow and Low

Andy Kirk   1930


Andy Kirk   1931

   Dunkin' a Doughnut

Andy Kirk   1936

   Until the Real Thing Comes Along

Andy Kirk   1944

   Roll 'Em


Birth of Jazz: Andy Kirk

Andy Kirk

Source: Big Band Library

  Born in 1903 in New York City, Adrian Rollini was a multi-instrumentalist band leader, playing drums, piano, bass saxophone, xylophone, etc.. Though Rollini may have made earlier piano rolls (for such as Aeolian, DeLuxe and QRS), his first documented instance of such thus far found is, 'I've Got the Blues for My Kentucky Home', made for Republic in 1920 (unfound at YouTube). It's cheating a bit to call Rollini's piano rolls his first record releases, as he wasn't found on vinyl until 1922 with Arthur Hand's California Ramblers, Rollini's first three sessions with that orchestra on bass saxophone in April, yielding 'Tell Her at Twilight', 'My Honey's Lovin' Arms' and 'Little Grey Sweetheart of Mine'. Hand soon retired and left leadership of the band to Rollini, who then at times formed various subgroups, such as the Varsity Eight, the Vagabonds, the Little Ramblers, the Goofus Five, the Five Birmingham Babies and the University Six. In addition to leading bands Rollini was in high demand as a session musician with a long thread of big name musicians. He also arranged, composed and performed in clubs and hotels. Beyond music, Rollini's love was boating, both speed and fishing. Upon retiring in the fifties Rollini invested in hotels. In 1956 Rollini was involved in an auto accident, requiring hospitalization for a nigh severed foot. Sometime during the next eighteen days at the James Arthur Smith Hospital in Homestead, Florida, he was exposed to mercury, then died of poisoning the fifteenth of May. Rollini was inducted into the Big Band and Jazz Hall of Fame in 1998. Another of those musicians who thought he had to play every instrument made, Rollini performs on piano and vibes in the latter examples below.

Adrian Rollini   1922

   My Honey's Lovin Arms

      The California Ramblers

Adrian Rollini   1924

   Arkansas Blues

      The Little Ramblers


      The California Ramblers

   Hard Hearted Hannah

      The California Ramblers

   I Must Have Company

      The California Ramblers

   Ramblin' Blues

      Golden Gate Orchestra

   Rose Marie

      Golden Gate Orchestra

   She Loves Me

      The Varsity Eight

   Too Tired

      Golden Gate Orchestra

Adrian Rollini   1925

   Don't Bring Lulu

      The Little Ramblers

   Cross Words

      The Little Ramblers

Adrian Rollini   1926

   My Baby Knows How

      The California Ramblers

   Remember The Night

      The Five Birmingham Babies

   Tuck In Kentucky and Smile

      The Goofus Five

   Under The Ukulele Tree

      The California Ramblers

Adrian Rollini   1927


      The Goofus Five

   Crazy Words, Crazy Tune

      The California Ramblers

   Davenport Blues


   Vo-Do-Do-De-O Blues

      The California Ramblers

   The Wang Wang Blues

      The Goofus Five

Adrian Rollini   1928

   Under the Moon

      With Fred Elizalde

Adrian Rollini   1934

   It Had to Be You

      Vocal: Ella Logan

   A Hundred Years From Today

   Somebody Loves Me


   Tiger Rag

   Who Walks In When I Walk Out?

Adrian Rollini   1935

   Got the Jitters

   Got a Need For You

      The Tap Room Gang   Vocal: Jeanne Burns

Adrian Rollini   1937

   St. Louis Blues



Adrian Rollini   1938

   Bei Mir Bist Du Schön

Adrian Rollini   1948

   Girl With Light Blue Hair


   Loch Lomond


   M'apparì tutt'amor


   Minute Waltz

      Live  Contrabass: George Hnida Guitar: Allen Hanlon

      Original composition: Chopin (Op.64 No. 1)

Adrian Rollini   1949

   Oya Negra/Liza

      Recorded radio broadcast


Birth of Jazz: Adrian Rollini

Adrian Rollini

Source: Hit & Run

Birth of Jazz: Paul Whiteman

Paul Whiteman

Source: Big Band Library


Band leader and composer Paul Whiteman, born in 1890 in Denver, moved to New York City in 1920, formed a band and released his first recordings the same year. DAHR has him recording thirteen titles to issue from August through December of 1920. Whiteman, a huge name in music, was called the King of Jazz "with certainty and dignity" by Duke Ellington, which should settle any quibble that Whiteman wasn't Louis Armstrong. Jazz has been a widely accommodating genre concerning which various jazz purists have ever severed the "real" jazz from the peripheral. First it was early musicians like James Europe or Wilbur Sweatman whom some thought never quite made it to jazz, basically remaining ragtime musicians, the real stuff beginning with Buddy Bolden in New Orleans. Then during the swing era there were those who swung, like Cab Calloway at the Cotton Club in Harlem or Ella Fitzgerald just getting out of bed, vs those who delivered nice watered down liquor in the form of the hotel dance band with "sweet" jazz between by such as Sammy Kaye. Such blurred rifts most notably occurred upon the rise of popular music, especially with the emergence of film. One variety of jazz purism rejected the freestyle, ranging from but noise to pieces highly difficult to perform, that arose in the sixties, Albert Ayler perhaps the most notorious. There were the popular crooners from Perry Como to Dean Martin whom some choked to hear called jazz with such as, say, Cannonball Adderley (who ventured into freestyle) around. So it was with Whiteman in his day, viewed by some a true jazzman, by others a popularist, and popular he definitely was. He is perhaps most famous for his performance of George Gershwin's 'Rhapsody in Blue' (composed 1924) in the 1930 film 'King of Jazz'. Between 1920 and 1934 Whiteman scored 32 No. 1 spots on the charts, his last two in 1934: 'Smoke Gets In Your Eyes' and 'Wagon Wheels'. It was Whiteman who discovered Bing Crosby and Mildred Bailey, and he arranged more than 3000 tunes. He died in 1967 in Pennsylvania. (More Whiteman under Bing Crosby in Early Jazz 2.)

Paul Whiteman   1920

   The Japanese Sandman


Paul Whiteman   1922




   Porcelain Maid


   Three O'Clock in the Morning


Paul Whiteman   1924

   It Had to Be You

   Linger a While

Paul Whiteman   1926

   Birth of the Blues


      With Bing Crosby

   Moonlight on the Ganges

   No More Worryin'


      With Franklyn Baur

Paul Whiteman   1928

   Lonely Melody

   Make Believe

      With Bing Crosby


   That's My Weakness Now

Paul Whiteman   1929

   China Boy

Paul Whiteman   1930

   Body and Soul

      With Jack Fulton

   Rhapsody In Blue

      Film: 'King Of Jazz'

Paul Whiteman   1934

   Smoke Gets in Your Eyes

      With Bob Lawrence

   A Strauss Waltz

   Wagon Wheels

      With Bob Lawrence

Paul Whiteman   1945




Birth of Jazz: Buster Bailey

Buster Bailey

Source: Last FM

Born in 1902, though Buster Bailey also played alto and soprano sax his main instrument was clarinet. Bailey began his professional career in 1917 with the WC Handy Orchestra at age fifteen. After touring with that band for a couple years he joined Mamie Smith and her Jazz Hounds, his first recordings with that outfit in two sessions on February 21, 1921, recording 'Jazzbo Ball', 'What Have I Done', 'That Thing Called Love' and 'Old Time Blues'. Bailey accompanied Smith on clarinet on several more tracks into January of 1923 (at least one track on alto sax in '21 as well). He then joined the Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra, recording 'Cutie Blues' and 'Chinaman Blues' with that band on June 23, 1923. That same year Bailey laid a few tracks with Joe King Oliver's band. Meeting Louis Armstrong in Oliver's band, he followed Armstrong from Chicago to New York, there to join Fletcher Henderson's orchestra in 1924, recording numerously with Henderson that year. (He had already laid a couple tracks with Henderson's Novelty Orchestra in June of 1921 with vocalist, Katie Crippen.) Also in '24 Bailey contributed to tunes for Ma Rainey, Alberta Hunter, Clarence Williams, the Red Onion Jazz Babies (with Louis and Lil Armstrong), Trixie Smith, Bessie Smith (with whom he would record numerously) and Clara Smith. In 1925 Bailey began recording extensively with both Henderson and Williams (as well as others) into the latter thirties. In 1927 Bailey toured Europe with Noble Sissle's band, of which he would also be a member from 1931 to 1934. Bailey first appeared in film in 1933 as of 'That's the Spirit'. (In 1947 he appeared in 'Sepia Cinderella' with Kirby, and in 1965, 'When the Boys Meet the Girls' with Louis Armstrong.) He worked with innumerable notable names, but a few among them being double bassist, John Kirby (1934 to 1946), the Mills Blue Rhythm Band (1934-35), Henry Red Allen (1935), Roy Eldridge (1936), Teddy Wilson, Billie Holiday, Willie Smith (1937), Maxine Sullivan (1937-38), Midge Williams and Her Jesters (1937-38), Rosetta Howard (1938), Red Norvo (1938), Mildred Bailey (1938-39), Wingy Manone (1939) and Wild Bill Davison (1961-62). In 1965 Bailey joined the All Stars, continuing his longstanding friendship with Armstrong. He died of heart attack in Brooklyn two years later in April 1967.

Buster Bailey   1921

   Jazzbo Ball

      With Mamie Smith

      Thought to be Bailey's 1st recording

   What Have I Done?

      With Mamie Smith

      Thought to be Bailey's 2nd recording

Buster Bailey   1923

   Chinaman Blues

      With Erskine Tate

   Cutie Blues

      With Erskine Tate

Buster Bailey   1934

   Call of the Delta

      With Red Allen & Benny Carter

   Shanghai Shuffle

      With the Seven Chocolate Dandies

   Wrappin´It Up

      With the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra

Buster Bailey   1937

   Dizzy Debutante

Buster Bailey   1938

   Sloe Jam Fizz

      With the Rhythm Busters

Buster Bailey   1939

   Cheatin' On Me

      With Helen Proctor & Red Allen

Buster Bailey   1958

   Clarinet Marmelade

      With Red Allen

Buster Bailey   1959

   St. Louis Blues

      With Red Allen

Buster Bailey   1961

   Jelly Roll Blues

      Live performance



Born in Georgia in 1897, pianist and band leader Fletcher Henderson traveled to New York in 1920 to acquire his master's in chemistry. But employment as of 1921 as recording director for the Black Swan label pulled him away from science toward music. It was 1921 that Henderson put together his Novelty Orchestra to back Katie Crippen on 'Blind Man Blues' and 'Sing 'Em for Mamma, Play 'Em for Me'. He backed several vocalists on recordings that year, including Alberta Hunter and Ethel Waters, the latter with whom he toured. In 1922 Fletcher employed alto saxophonist, Don Redman, as his arranger. Among the more notable who played in Henderson's band through the years were Benny Carter, Buster Bailey, Coleman Hawkins, Louis Armstrong, Henry Red Allen, Chu Berry, Doc Cheatham, Roy Eldridge and Sun Ra. Henderson was an important figure in the development of big band swing, noted for his arrangements and compositions for Benny Goodman. He died in NYC in 1952.

Fletcher Henderson   1921

   Blind Man Blues

     Vocal: Katie Crippen

     Henderson's 1st recording issued

   Sing 'Em For Mamma, Play 'Em For Me

     Vocal: Katie Crippen   Take 1 of 2

     Henderson's 2nd recording issued

   Sing 'Em For Mamma, Play 'Em For Me

     Vocal: Katie Crippen   Take 2 of 2

     Henderson's 3rd recording issued

   Home Again Blues

     Vocal: Lulu Whidby

     Henderson's 4th recording issued

   Strut Miss Lizzie

     Vocal: Lulu Whidby

     Henderson's 5th recording issued

Fletcher Henderson   1923

   West Indian Blues

Fletcher Henderson   1924  

   Charley My Boy

Fletcher Henderson   1925

   I'll See You In My Dreams


Fletcher Henderson   1926

   Sweet Thing

Fletcher Henderson   1927

   Sing, Sing, Sing

   Whiteman Stomp

      Composed by Fats Waller


Birth of Jazz: Fletcher Henderson

Fletcher Henderson

Source: Jazz-O-Rama

Birth of Jazz: Charlie Fess Johnson

Charlie Fess Johnson

Source: Archive Org

Charlie "Fess" Johnson, bandleader and pianist, was notable for his band, the Paradise Ten, which played at Small's Paradise Club in Harlem from 1925 to 1935. Born in Philadelphia in 1891, Johnson is thought to have begun recording with Mary Stafford and her Jazz Band, accompanying her on piano for two sessions of two tracks each in 1921 in New York City for Columbia. The January session yielded 'Royal Garden Blues' and 'Crazy Blues'. The March session wrought 'I'm Gonna Jazz My Way ' and 'Down Where They Play the Blues'. Johnson first recorded with his Paradise Orchestra circa February 1925: 'Don't Forget' and 'Medlin' with the Blues'. The next year found him laying tracks with Duke Ellington's Memphis Bell Hops. Johnson changed the name of his orchestra to the Paradise Ten for issues in '27 and '28. In September of '28 he contributed to 'Dusky Stevedore' and 'Take Your Tomorrow' with the Southern Stompers led by pianist, Mike Jackson. Johnson also laid tunes that month with his orchestra renamed to the Paradise Band. It was simply His Orchestra for releases in mid 1929, recordings to follow with Tiny Parham in November of 1930 in Chicago and Louis Armstrong for radio broadcast at the Zoo Concert Hall, the Hague, Netherlands, in November of '33: 'You Rascal You' and 'Dinah'. Johnson died in NYC in December of 1959.

Charlie Fess Johnson   1921

   Crazy Blues

     With Mary Stafford and Her Jazz Band

   Royal Garden Blues

     With Mary Stafford and Her Jazz Band

Charlie Fess Johnson   1925

   Birmingham Black Bottom

   Don't You Leave Me Here

   Meddlin' With the Blues

   Paradise Wobble

Charlie Fess Johnson   1928

   Boy in the Boat



Birth of Jazz: Frankie Trumbauer

Frank Trumbauer

Source: Jimbo Berkey

Born in 1901 in Carbondale, Illinois, saxophonist Frank Trumbauer, part Cherokee, began directing his own band in 1927. His first recordings were with the Gene Rodemich Orchestra in November of 1920 for Brunswick, likely released the next January, among which were 'Castle of Dreams', 'Margie', 'June' and 'Treasure Isle'. Trumbauer recorded a couple unissued tracks with Joe Kayser in January of '21 before, the same month, commencing to record with the Benson Orchestra of Chicago into latter 1923. 1924 saw Trumbauer with the Ray Miller Orchestra, the Mound City Blue Blowers and the Arkansas Travelers before recording with Bix Beiderbecke (cornet), Rube Bloom (piano), Miff Mole (trombone), Min Leibrook (tuba) and Vic Moore (drums) in the Sioux City Six on October 10, releasing 'Flock o' Blues' and 'I'm Glad'. Trumbauer and Beiderbecke would be close companions in the music business. They would record again together in the orchestra of Jean Goldkette in 1926 and '27 before recording in each other's various orchestra's that year as well. Trumbauer's first recordings as a leader were shared with both Beiderbecke and guitarist, Eddie Lang, in that capacity on February 4 of '27 in NYC, yielding 'Trumbology', 'Clarinet Marmalade' and 'Singin' the Blues'. One could account Trumbauer's partnership with Beiderbecke to be a busy one in '27, they recording together with Paul Whiteman's orchestra in November, They would appear on numberless titles under Whiteman until Beiderbecke's last tracks with that orchestra on November 13, 1929: 'Waiting at the End of the Road' and 'When You're Counting the Stars Alone'. (Beiderbecke quit Whiteman to work with Hoagy Carmichael. He plays cornet in nigh all the samples below.) Trumbauer's relationship with Bloom was a productive one as well. They had first recorded together for Okeh Records in the Arkansas Travelers about May of '24 ('Georgia Blues' and 'Lost My Baby Blues'). They would perform together with Ray Miller, the Sioux City Six, the Cotton Pickers and the band of Sam Lanin. Mole had recorded with Trumbauer since Ray Miller on April 23, 1924 ('Lots o' Mama' and 'From One Till Two'). They'd issued titles together in the Arkansas Travelers and Sioux City Six (above), and set tracks together again with Ray Miller, then the Cotton Pickers. Trumbauer remained with Whiteman for eight years, after which he worked with a couple more of his own bands in the latter thirties until abandoning music to become an aviator in 1940. Trumbauer worked as a test pilot and trained crews in the operation of the B-52 bomber during World War II. Though he continued performing and recording after the war he remained employed with the Civil Aeronautics Authority thereafter. Trumbauer died of heart attack in Kansas City in 1956, only 55 years old.

Frank Trumbauer   1927

   Singin' the Blues

   Blue River

   A Good Man Is Hard to Find


   Ostrich Walk

   Riverboat Shuffle

   Three Blind Mice

   Way Down Yonder In New Orleans

Frank Trumbauer   1928

   Mississippi Mud

      With Bing Crosby

   Sentimental Baby

   There'll Come a Time

Frank Trumbauer   1929

   No One Can Take Your Place

   Shivery Stomp

Frank Trumbauer   1931

   Honeysuckle Rose

Frank Trumbauer   1934

   Blue Moon


   Long About Midnight



  Born in 1897 in Philadelphia, bandleader Gus Arnheim first recorded with Abe Lyman and his Hotel Ambassador Orchestra in Santa Monica, CA, in September of 1922, he performing piano in Lyman's band, recording numerously, until latter 1925. Arnheim first laid tracks as a leader for Okeh Records in April 1928. Arnheim is thought to have begun his career in 1919 with a group called the Syncopated Five in Santa Monica. He also played theatres and backed Sophie Tucker. In 1927 Arnheim formed the band that would become the Cocoanut Grove Orchestra, making its first European tour in 1929. Arnheim also toured the States with the band, becoming the Cocoanut Grove Ambassadors in 1931. Arnheim died of heart attack in Los Angeles in 1955.

Gus Arnheim   1922

   Those Longing For You Blues

     With Abe Lyman

     Thought to be Arnheim's 1st piano recording

Gus Arnheim   1928

   1928 Medley

   Feelin' Good

   I Can't Do Without You

   If I Can't Have You

   Tiger Rag

Gus Arnheim   1929

   Singin' In the Rain

   Sleepy Valley

   Sweet Georgia Brown

   This Is Heaven

      Vocal: Buster Dees

   I'm Doin' That Thing

   One Sweet Kiss

      Vocal: Buster Dees

Gus Arnheim   1930

   Just One More Chance

Gus Arnheim   1931

   I'm Through With Love

     Vocal: Loyce Whiteman

   I Surrender Dear

      Vocal: Bing Crosby

   Sweet and Lovely

Gus Arnheim   1932

   It Might Have Been You

      Vocal: Meri Bell

Gus Arnheim   1933

   Egyptian Shimmy

Gus Arnheim   1937


      Vocals: Three Rhythm Boys

   So Rare

      Vocal: Jimmy Farrell


Birth of Jazz: Gus Arnheim

Gus Arnheim

Source: Discogs

Birth of Jazz: Jan Garber

Jan Garber

Source: AFRS

Born Jacob Charles Garber in 1894 in Indianapolis, Jan Garber was leading his first band by age 21 (1917). Following World War I Garber played violin in the Philadelphia Symphony Orchestra before forming the Garber-Milton Orchestra with pianist Milton Davis in 1921. That band is thought to have grooved its first vinyl in December of 1921 for Columbia: 'Jazz Me Blues' and ''O sole mio'. Garber laid tracks with Garber/Davis Orchestra in '22 and '23 before what is thought his first release with his own orchestra in 1924: 'If You Don't Want Me'. Garber continued recording into the sixties, leading bands until 1971, his final performance in Houston. He died in Shreveport, Louisiana, in 1977.

Jan Garber   1922

   Haunting Blues

      Garber-Davis Orchestra

Jan Garber   1923

   Steamboat Sal

      Garber-Davis Orchestra

Jan Garber   1925

   Don't Bring Lulu

   I Want to Be Happy

Jan Garber   1926

   Baby Face

      Original composition: Benny Davis

   How Could Red Ridin' Hood

   There Ain't No Maybe In My Baby's Eyes

Jan Garber   1927

   Positively Absolutely!

   Under the Moon

   What Do I Care What Somebody Said

Jan Garber   1928


      Original composition: Andy Razaf

   She's a Great Girl

   Since My Best Gal Turned Me Down

   Tin Ear/Was It a Dream?

Jan Garber   1929

   Weary River

Jan Garber   1930

   Lazy Lou'siana Moon

   Puttin' on the Ritz

      Original composition: Irving Berlin

Jan Garber   1934

   All I Do Is Dream Of You

   Boulevard of Broken Dreams

   Just Once Too Often

Jan Garber   1935

   In a Little Gypsy Tea Room

      Vocal: Lee Bennett

Jan Garber   1937



Jan Garber   1939


      Film   Vocals: Lee Bennett & Phyllis Kenny

Jan Garber   1965


      Television performance


  Born Abraham Simon in 1897, Abe Lyman's first professional engagement is thought to have been at age fourteen, playing drums in a Chicago cafe. His first major gig was at the Cocoanut Grove nightclub at the Ambassador Hotel in Los Angeles in 1922 with his own eleven-piece orchestra, drawing 2000 heads his opening night. Lyman also first recorded in latter 1922 in Santa Monica, CA, those tracks issued on Nordskog and Timeless Records: 'Those Longing for You Blues' and 'Are You Playing Fair?'. Lyman began recording for Brunswick and Grannyphone as well in 1923. In 1929 the Lyman Orchestra toured London and Paris, then began appearing in films in 1930. By the time Lyman joined the Merchant Marines in 1943 his career was waning. His orchestra last recorded in 1945. Lyman retired from the music business at age 50 (1947) to work in restaurant management, dying in Beverly Hills ten years later.

Abe Lyman   1922

   Those Longing For You Blues

     Lyman's 1st recording

Abe Lyman   1923

   California Blues


   Queen of Egypt

Abe Lyman   1924


Abe Lyman   1926

   Breezin' Along With The Breeze

   Havin' Lots of Fun

   Nothing Else To Do

   Shake That Thing

Abe Lyman   1927

   Love Baby

   Varsity Drag

Abe Lyman   1928

   Don't Be Like That

   Good News

   I Think Of What You Used To Think Of Me

   A Jazz Holiday


   That's My Weakness Now

Abe Lyman   1930


Abe Lyman   1931

   Just One More Chance

   When The Rest Of The Crowd Goes Home

Abe Lyman   1933

   Heaven Only Knows

Abe Lyman   1934

   Music Makes Me

Abe Lyman   1935

   March Winds And April Showers

Abe Lyman   1939

   Good Morning

      Vocal: Rose Blane

Abe Lyman   1942


      Vocal: Rose Blane

Abe Lyman   1945

   Rum And Coca-Cola

      Vocal: Rose Blane


Birth of Jazz: Abe Lyman

Abe Lyman

Source: Planet Barberella

Birth of Jazz: New Orleans Rhythm Kings

New Orleans Rhythm Kings

Photo: Duncan Schiedt

Source: 78 RPM Record Spins

The New Orleans Rhythm Kings merged the New Orleans style with ragtime in Chicago. Consisting of Leon Roppolo, Jack Pettis, Elmer Schoebel, Arnold Loyacano, Paul Mares, Frank Snyder and George Brunies, the band's first professional engagement was at Friar's Inn in Chicago in 1921. NORK first recorded with Gennett Records in 1922. Like the Original Dixie Jazz Band, NORK was among the first all-white jazz bands, during a period when the genre was predominantly black.

New Orleans Rhythm Kings   1922

   Livery Stable Blues

   Clarinet Marmalade

   She's Cryin' For Me

   Weary Blues

   Tin Roof Blues

      Milestone reissue

New Orleans Rhythm Kings   1923

   Wolverine Blues

   Baby Brown

   Wolverine Blues


  Born in La Place, Louisiana in 1886, trombone player Kid Ory had been discovered by Buddy Bolden in New Orleans. Upon a successful career as a band leader for some years he took off for Los Angeles where he made his first recordings in June 1922 with clarinetist, Mutt Carey, pianist, Dink Johnson and bassist, Ed Garland, backing vocalist, Roberta Dudley. Those tracks were 'Krooked Blues' and 'When You're Alone Blues'. Among the more important names with whom Ory laid numerous tracks were Louis Armstrong, Luis Russell and King Oliver. In 1959 he toured Europe with Henry Red Allen, resulting in numerous recordings. Their concert in Manchester, England, would find its way onto the album, 'Live In England 1959', issued in 1981. Allen also joined Ory in the television broadcast of 'Chicago and All That Jazz' at NBC Studios in latter 1961. Ory largely remained a traditionalist of the New Orleans sound throughout his career. He retired from the music business in 1966 (though recorded tracks in April 1971 in New Orleans) and died in Honolulu in 1973. 'Blues For Jimmie', below, was composed by Ory the day of Jimmie Noone's death for that evening's broadcast of 'The Orson Welles Almanac' radio show.

Kid Ory   1922

   Krooked Blues

      Vocal: Roberta Dudley

     Ory's 1st issued recording

   Maybe Someday

      Vocal: Ruth Lee

     Ory's 3rd issued recording

   Ory's Creole Trombone

     Ory's 5th issued recording

   That Sweet Something Dear

      Vocal: Ruth Lee

      Ory's 4th issued recording

   When You're Alone Blues

      Vocal: Roberta Dudley

     Ory's 2nd issued recording

Kid Ory   1926

   Muskrat Ramble

Kid Ory   1930

   Don't You Think I Love You

Kid Ory   1944

   Blues For Jimmie

Kid Ory   1945

   Ballin' the Jack

   Blanche Touquatoux

   Careless Love

   Savoy Blues

Kid Ory   1946

   Eh, La Bas

   Farewell to Storyville

   Tiger Rag

Kid Ory   1947

   Battle of Jericho

Kid Ory   1949

   Who's Sorry Now

Kid Ory   1954


   Shake That Thing

   Tin Roof Blues

Kid Ory   1957

   High Society

      With Henry Red Allen

   Song Of The Wanderer

Kid Ory   1959

   Christopher Columbus

      With Henry Red Allen

   Basin Street Blues

      With Henry Red Allen & Alton Redd

     Live performance

   Do What Ory Says/Without You

      With Henry Red Allen & Alton Redd

      Live performance

   In the Mood

      With Henry Red Allen


      With Henry Red Allen & Alton Redd

      Live performance

   Tiger Rag

      With Henry Red Allen & Alton Redd

      Live performance


Birth of Jazz: Kid Ory

Kid Ory

Source: All About Jazz

Birth of Jazz: Don Redman

Don Redman

Photo: Todd Bolton

Source: From the Vaults

Born in 1900 in Piedmont, West Virginia, Don Redman was something precocious, playing trumpet at three, joining his first band at six, skilled on several wind instruments and piano by the time he was a teenager. He attended both Storer College and the Boston Conservatory before joining Billy Page's Broadway Syncopaters in NYC. Redman's debut recordings were on alto sax, accompanying vocalist, Eddie Gray, in 1922, for Black Swan records on 'Why Did You Make a Plaything of Me' and 'I Like You'. He also backed singer, Lucille Hegamin, on alto sax and clarinet in four sessions during '22, resulting in nine issued tracks that year with Hegamin, the first two from a session in July for Cameo: 'I've Got What It Takes' and 'Can't Get Lovin' Blues'. 1923 found Redman backing singers such as Alberta Hunter before his first sessions with Fletcher Henderson's orchestra to back vocalist, Hannah Sylvester, on 'Midnight Blues' and 'I Don't Let No Man Worry Me', those for Emerson circa March. Henderson recorded prolifically, also backing singers such as Rosa Henderson (no relation), Clara Smith and Bessie Smith. Saxophonist, Coleman Hawkins, would also begin recording with Henderson on July 19, 1923, backing Rosa on 'Midnight Blues' and 'Struttin' Blues'. Redman sat in all of Henderson's bands, also arranging, until his last session with him on November 4, 1927, yielding 'A Rhythmic Dream' and 'Hop Off'. Meanwhile Redman had begun recording with such as Clarence Williams and Perry Bradford in 1925, his initial sessions with Williams on March 4 yielding 'Cast Away' and 'Papa De Da Da'; his first with Bradford being 'Lucy Long' and 'I Ain't Gonna Play No Second Fiddle'. Redman first recorded with Duke Ellington with the latter's Washingtonians on March 26, 1926, those tunes being 'Georgia Grind' and 'Parlor Social Stomp'. After a highly successful career with Henderson Redman became director of drummer, William McKinney's,  Cotton Pickers for which he arranged a majority of their music. His first tracks with the Cotton Pickers were recorded on July 11, 1928, harvesting such as 'Cryin' and Sighin'. Redman began recording with the Chocolate Dandies on October 13 in NYC the same year, those tunes: 'Paducah', 'Star Dust', 'Birmingham Breakdown' and 'Four or Five Times'. His first tracks with Jean Goldkette followed in Chicago on November 23 that year, to issue 'Withered Roses', 'My Blackbirds Are Bluebirds' and 'Don't Be Like That'. Redman would wrap up '28 huge with Louis Armstrong. Redman had first recorded with Armstrong in Henderson's band on October 7, 1924 ('Manda' and 'Go 'Long Mule'), they also working together in the bands of Perry Bradford and Clarence Williams. Armstrong was now leading his own band, the Savoy Ballroom Five, with which Redman first recorded on December 5, 1928, to the issue of 'No One Else But You', 'Beau Koo Jack' and 'Save It Pretty Mama'. Redman formed his own orchestra in 1931, which began playing for radio and first recorded the same year on September 24, titles such as 'Chant of the Weed' (2 takes).His band recorded for Brunswick, a number of ARC labels, the Variety label and Bluebird before separating in 1940. Some of the bigger names for whom Redman arranged in the latter thirties were Count Basie and Jimmy Dorsey. It was January 27, 1937 that Redman first laid tracks with Basie, March of '38 with Dorsey. Redman swung in the forties with the bands of Jimmie Lunceford and Harry James, his first recordings with Lunceford on January 5, 1940. In the fifties he became Pearl Bailey's musical director. Redman continued performing on piano into the sixties, as well as on sax with Eubie Blake and Noble Sissle. Redman died in New York City in 1964, among the more important names in jazz.

Don Redman   1922

   Can't Get Lovin' Blues

      With Lucille Hegamin

   I've Got What It Takes

      With Lucille Hegamin

Don Redman   1923

   Bull Blues

      With Fletcher Henderson

   Down Hearted Blues

      With Fletcher Henderson

Don Redman   1931

   Chant of the Weed

      The Don Redman Orchestra

Don Redman   1932

   Doin' The New Low Down

   I Heard

Don Redman   1933

   It's All Your Fault

      The Don Redman Orchestra

   Shuffle Your Feet



Born in New Orleans in 1901, trumpeter Louis Armstrong originally followed the New Orleans style. (As a child Armstrong made a point of attending Buddy Bolden performances.) Later moving from Louisiana to Chicago, he played with King Oliver, with whom he first recorded in April of 1923 in Richmond, Indiana. Samples from Armstrong's first four sessions with Oliver that year can be heard at Halidon Music. The next year Armstrong recorded with the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra, Ma Rainey and Virginia Liston. His first recordings as a band leader occurred in Chicago with his Hot Five on November 12 of 1925, 'My Heart' the first tune in that session of three. His next session with the Hot Five was in February of 1926, one tune unissued. The following session on the 26th, however, yielded several titles, 'Cornet Chop Suey' among them. Armstrong was an enormously beloved jazz personality. Not only a major figure in swing (also credited with originating scat singing), but when the word "jazz" is read or spoken the name "Louis Armstrong" cannot but arise in any American mind. He appeared in film for the first time in 1931: 'Ex-Flam'. Between Chicago, Los Angeles, New Orleans and New York Armstrong was among the hardest working musicians in the industry, he and his band, the All Stars, pumping out more than 300 engagements a year from 1947 (inception of the All Stars) through the sixties. Armstrong's version of 'Hello Dolly' in 1964 might be considered ultimate to jazz in that it is said to be the last jazz recording to sell more copies than rock and roll. Armstrong died in his sleep July 6, 1971, of heart attack. More early Armstrong to be found under King Oliver lower on this page.

Louis Armstrong   1923

   Canal Street Blues

     Thought to be Armstrong's 2nd recording

   Dipper Mouth Blues

     With King Oliver

   Just Gone

     With King Oliver

     Thought to be Armstrong's 1st recording

   Mandy Lee Blues

     Thought to be Armstrong's 3rd recording

Louis Armstrong   1925  

   Gut Bucket Blues

   Cornet Chop Suey

   West End Blues

Louis Armstrong   1926  

   Heebie Jeebies

Louis Armstrong   1938

   When the Saints Go Marching In

Louis Armstrong   1947

   On the Sunny Side Of the Street

   Someday You'll Be Sorry

Louis Armstrong   1959

   Mack the Knife

      Live performance

Louis Armstrong   1964

   Hello Dolly

Louis Armstrong   1965

   Blueberry Hill

     Filmed in Berlin

Louis Armstrong   1968

   Dream a Little Dream of Me


Birth of Jazz: Louis Armstrong

Louis Armstrong

Source: Keep Swinging

Birth of Jazz: Smith Ballew

Smith Ballew

Source: Way to Famous

Born in Palestine, Texas in 1902, bandleader and vocalist Smith (Sykes) Ballew recorded his first two tracks on May 25, 1923, playing banjo on 'My Sweetie Went Away' and 'I Cried For You' in New York City. That was with Howard Lanin's Arcadia Orchestra. Later that year he played banjo on several tunes by Jimmie's Joys. He wouldn't record again for several years. He got his major break in Chicago in 1927, invited by Ben Pollack to join his band. Unfortunately, in 1928 he responded to another invitation, this time by Ted Fio Rito, to come join his band in New York City. When he got there with no money there was no job either, and he ended up busking on the streets. Yet he was saved that same year by the Dorsey Brothers who introduced him into the New York City jazz circuit. He, then, next recorded in 1928, age 26, with Meyer Davis. Ballew also worked with the Dorseys before they split apart to form each their own orchestras. That same year, 1929, he formed his own orchestra with assistance from Jean Goldkette. Not much later Ballew would also lend his talents to Hollywood as a singing cowboy. Ballew withdrew, however, from both movies and music in the early fifties, obtaining employment in public relations with General Dynamics, with which he remained until retiring from that in 1967. Ballew died in 1984 in Texas. All the tracks below for year 1928 are with Meyer Davis.

Smith Ballew   1923

   I Cried For You

     With Howard Lanin

     Thought to be Ballew's 2nd recording

   My Sweetie Went Away

     With Howard Lanin

     Thought to be Ballew's 1st recording

   Wolverine Blues

      With Jimmy Joy

     Recorded October 23 in Los Angeles

Smith Ballew   1928

   Blue Grass

   Buy Buy for Baby

   Do You

      Joined by the Dorsey Brothers

   Jo Anne

   My Old Girl's My New Girl Now

   She's Wonderful

   When Summer Is Gone

Smith Ballew   1929

   Button Up Your Overcoat

      With the Dorsey Brothers

   Can't We Be Friends?

   Huggable Kissable You

   Mean to Me

   My Love Parade

   Not That I Care

   Same Old Moon

   Sing You Sinners

   Sweetheart We Need Each Other

      With the Fred Rich Orchestra

   Time On My Hands

   Weary River

      With Joe Venuti

Smith Ballew   1930

   Just Can't Be Bothered With Me

   You Were Only Passing Time With Me

Smith Ballew   1931

   Dream a Little Dream of Me

      With the Teddy Raph Orchestra

   I Wanna Sing About You

   Just a Gigolo

Smith Ballew   1935

   I Won't Dance

   Lovely to Look At



Born in New Orleans in 1897, clarinetist and soprano sax player Sidney Bechet first recorded in 1920, a couple of unissued tracks with Benny Peyton's Jazz Kings. A couple more unissued tunes followed in 1923 with both Greeley & Drayton and Bessie Smith. Bechet first appeared on vinyl that year with Clarence Williams' Blue Five: 'Wild Cat Blues' and 'Kansas City Man Blues', also laying tracks with such as Mamie Smith, Eva Taylor, Clarence Williams and Sara Martin. 1924 saw Bechet recording with Louis Armstrong in Williams' Blue Five, such as 'Texas Moaner Blues'. Bechet had begun playing with various New Orleans ensembles as a child. In 1911 he had joined Bunk Johnson's Eagle Band, then King Oliver's Olympia Band in 1913. In 1914 he began touring, heading north to Chicago, sometimes playing with Freddie Keppard. In 1919 he made it to New York where he joined Will Marion Cook's Syncopated Orchestra and was soon off to Europe on tour. But in 1922 he was convicted of assault and deported back to the States. In 1924 he returned to Europe again, this time with Josephine Baker in the 'Revue Nègre'. He was jailed and deported again, this time in Paris, for involvement in a gun battle. Back in the United States in 1929, Noble Sissle owned the courage to hire him, with whom he returned to Europe, then Russia, then back to the States, that time without deportment. In 1932 Bechet formed a band and began playing at the Savoy Ballroom in New York. Shuffling from gig to gig and band to band, it was now the Depression and jobs in the music industry were getting thin. So he and trumpeter, Tommy Ladnier, opened a tailor shop. Financial difficulties continued throughout the forties until Bechet returned to Paris in 1950 to renewed popularity, signing on with the French Vogue label in 1953. Bechet died in France several  years later in 1959.

Sidney Bechet   1924

   Wild Cat Blues

     With Clarence William's Blue Five

      Thought to be Bechet's 1st issued recording

Sidney Bechet   1924

   Texas Moaner Blues

     With Clarence William's Blue Five

      Cornet: Louis Armstrong

Sidney Bechet   1932

   Maple Leaf Rag

Sidney Bechet   1941

   Egyptian Fantasy

Sidney Bechet   1944

   Blue Horizon

Sidney Bechet   1949

   Tin Roof Blues

Sidney Bechet   1950

   At a Georgia Camp Meeting

Sidney Bechet   1956



Birth of Jazz: Sidney Bechet

Sidney Bechet

Source: New Orleans Joymakers

Birth of Jazz: Johnny Dodds

Johnny Dodds

Source: Wine & Vinyl

Born in 1892, clarinetist, Johnny Dodds (brother of drummer Baby Dodds in Early Jazz 3), joined Kid Ory's band in New Orleans in 1912 at age twenty. Like his brother, Baby, he also played on Mississippi river boats for Fate Marable (Marable perhaps the most renowned of riverboat bandleaders). Dodds afterward moved to San Francisco to join King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band, which he followed to Chicago where the band was joined by Louis Armstrong (cornet), Armstrong's bride-to-be, Lil Armstrong (piano) and Johnny's brother, Baby Dodds. The first session by that group with Oliver on cornet on April 5, 1923, in Richmond, Indiana, was significant in jazz as the debut vinyl of all mentioned. Also contributing were Honore Dutrey on trombone and Bud Scott on banjo. Oliver's band made numerous recordings that year. In 1927 Dodds recorded numerously with Louis Armstrong in various configurations including Dodd's Black Bottom Stompers (Earl Hines at piano) and Armstrong's Hot Seven. He also laid a number of tracks with Jelly Roll Morton that year. Dodds led a number of bands during his career, beginning in '27 with the Dixieland Thumpers and the State Street Ramblers. Ever with his brother, Baby, those bands would morph into the Chicago Footwarmers in latter '27. Dodds continued leading bands (Baby at his side) until his death in August 1940 in Chicago of heart attack. (More Creole Jazz Band below under King Oliver).

Johnny Dodds   1923

   High Society

Johnny Dodds   1926

   Bohunkus Blues

   New Orleans Bootblacks

   Perdido Street Blues

Johnny Dodds   1927

   Struttin' With Some Barbecue

      Trumpet: Louis Armstrong Trombone: Kid Ory

   When Erastus Plays His Old Kazoo

Johnny Dodds   1928

   Blue Washboard Stomp

   Bucktown Stomp

   Jasper Taylor Blues

   Weary City

Johnny Dodds   1929

   Hear Me Talkin' to Ya

   Piggly Wiggly

   Too Tight

Johnny Dodds   1938


      Guitar: Teddy Bunn   Piano: Lil Armstrong

      Trumpet: Charlie Shavers

Johnny Dodds   1940

   Red Onion Blues



Born in 1889 in New Orleans, cornet player Freddie Keppard, is one of the few musicians on this page who knew Buddy Bolden (thirteen years Keppard's senior), and is said to have played much in Bolden's style. Keppard first played accordion, violin and mandolin. It was the mandolin he played when at about the age of ten he began performing duos with his older brother Louis. He didn't take up the cornet until he was sixteen, about the same year he formed his first band, the Olympia Orchestra. He then took Bolden's vacated spot not only in the Eagle Band but in general, as his playing was so similar to Bolden's. About the cusp of 1911-12 Keppard toured the States with the Original Creole Ragtime Band, which became the Original Creole Orchestra in 1913. He was offered his first recording deal in 1915 by the Victor Talking Machine Company in NYC. But Keppard turned it down, considering the $25 payment (standard for musicians not well known) insufficient. About 1917 Keppard settled in Chicago where, upon the dissolution of his orchestra in 1918, he pursued a solo career until 1926, then forming the Jazz Cardinals. His first recording session had arrived in 1918 with Bill Johnson's Creole Jass Band, an unissued test of 'Tack 'Em Down'. In '23 Keppard contributed cornet to a couple tracks with Erskine Tate's Vendome Orchestra: 'Cutie Blues' and 'Chinaman Blues'. He began recording with Doc Cook in '24. In 1926 he performed on 'Old Man Blues' by pianist, Jimmy Blythe's, Birmingham Bluetette. By the time of his first issues in latter '26 with his Jazz Cardinals ('Stock Yards Strut' and 'Salty Dog') Blythe had long since developed the amusing stunt of playing with a handkerchief over his instrument, to hide his fingering from thieves, he said. Keppard is also found on a couple of tracks by Jasper Taylor and his State Street Boys per '27 ('Stomp Time Blues' and 'It Must Be the Blues') and Frankie Half Pint Jaxon in '1928. Keppard was gradually taken down by alcoholism and tuberculosis, no longer able to perform by latter 1932. He died of tuberculosis in Chicago in July 1933.

Freddie Keppard   1923  

   High Fever

Freddie Keppard   1926  

   Here Comes The Hot Tamale Man

   Salty Dog

   Stock Yards Strut


Birth of Jazz: Freddie Keppard

Freddie Keppard

Source: Yester Century Pop

Birth of Jazz: Ben Moten

Bennie Moten

Source: Kyoichi Watanabe

Born in Kansas City, Missouri, in 1895, pianist and bandleader Ben Moten (not to be confused with the clarinetist of the same period, nor the later  bassist), first pursued the New Orleans style until he came into his own, fairly representative of the early Chicago limb of jazz. His Kansas City Orchestra was the big band sound out of which Count Basie developed his own style of swing. He first recorded with his Kansas City Orchestra in September 1923 for Okeh Records, backing vocalist, Ada Brown, on 'Ill-natured Blues' and 'Evil Mama Blues'. He began laying tracks for Victor in December of 1926, two of those being 'Thick Lip Stomp' and 'Harmony Blues'. In 1929 Moten recruited into his band what would become major names in jazz: Count Basie, Hot Lips Page, Walter Page and Jimmy Rushing. His Kansas City Orchestra recorded for the last time in December 1932 (Moten as bandleader, but not performing). Moten died in 1935 of a failed tonsillectomy.

Bennie Moten   1923

   Evil Mama Blues

     Vocal: Ada Brown

Bennie Moten   1927

   Ding Dong Blues

   Moten Stomp

   Thick Lip Stomp

   Yazoo Blues

Bennie Moten   1929

   Boot It

   The Jones Law Blues

   Let's Get It

   Rumba Negro


  Born in 1900 in Winnipeg, Tiny Parham grew up in Kansas City. Although Parham was a pianist he more concentrated on work as a bandleader. Moving to Chicago in 1926, he first recorded later that year with Paramount as an accompanist for Leola Wilson: 'Dishrag Blues' and 'Rollin' Mill Blues'. He also accompanied Elzadie Robinson on 'Humming Blues' about that time. His last session of '26 was with the Apollo Syncopators in December, running that operation with violinist, Leroy Pickett, for two takes of 'Alexander, Where's That Band?' and one of 'Mojo Strut'. He commenced 1927 at January sessions with Jasper Taylor and his State Street Boys, including clarinetist, Johnny Dodds, and Freddie Keppard at cornet, recording 'Stomp Time Blues' and 'It Must Be the Blues'. He next accompanied Ma Rainey on a couple tracks and led a few tunes with Dodds before forming his Black Patti Band to record 'Um-ta-da-da-da' for the Black Patti record label circa June 28 that year. In December he composed an ensemble called the "Forty" Five to record 'Jim Jackson's Kansas City Blues' and 'A Little Bit Closer' for Paramount. Parham then backed a few vocalists before forming his Musicians for tracks recorded on July 2, 1928, 'Cuckoo Blues' among them. Parham led several more sessions as a leader until his last on November 11, 1930, after which he worked largely as an organist in theatres throughout the Great Depression decade of the thirties. Parham' first and last session afterward was in Chicago on June 4, 1940, while working as an organist at a skating rink. His band called the Four Aces, those tracks were 'Frogtown Blues', 'Moving Day' and 'Spo-de-o-dee', the last with Sam Theard at vocals. Parham died three years later in his dressing room at a performance at Kilbourne Hotel in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, on April 4, 1943.

Tiny Parham   1927

   Careless Love

      Clarinet: Johnny Dodds

Tiny Parham   1928

   The Head Hunter's Dream

   Jogo Rhythm

   Stuttering Blues

   Tiny's Stomp (Oriental Blues)

Tiny Parham   1929

   Cathedral Blues

   Frogtown Blues

   Subway Sobs


   Washboard Wiggles

Tiny Parham   1930

   Back to the Jungle


   Squeeze Me

   Steel String Blues


Birth of Jazz: Tiny Parham

Tiny Parham

Source: auguzto777

Birth of Jazz: Red Nichols

Red Nichols

Source: Cobre y Pistones

Born in 1905 in Ogden, Utah, Dixieland cornetist Red Nichols was popular for his foxtrots. He first recorded with the Syncopating Seven on November 22, 1922, putting down 'Chicago' for issue presumed to have been the next year. 1923 saw Nichols backing both Howard and Sam Lanin, as well as recording with Bailey's Lucky Seven. It was with Bailey's Lucky Seven that Nichols first teamed with trombonist Miff Mole, one of his more important compatriots during the twenties, performing in numerous groups together. Their first two tracks with the Seven were issued from a session held on August 25, 1924: 'Cold Mama Burns Me Up' and 'Go, Emmaline'. They first recorded with Sam Lenin's Red Heads on February 26, 1925, of which band Nichols would become leader later that year. Mole would also record with Nichols' Five Pennies that included guitarist, Eddie Lang. That group didn't include Mole, however, in its first session on December 8, 1926, yielding two tracks each of 'Washboard Blues' and 'That's No Bargain'. In one combination or another, Nichols would record scores of jazz records over the years with the Five Pennies. Besides Brunswick, Nichols also recorded for Edison, Victor, Bluebird, Variety and Okeh, working with just about every big name in jazz during his career. In 1942 Nichols quit the Casa Loma Orchestra to assist the war effort, working in shipyards, after which he reformed the Five Pennies to work clubs in Los Angeles. In the early fifties he made a goodwill tour of Europe for the State Department. Nichols died in 1965 in Las Vegas. Tracks below are alphabetical by year. Red Nichols can also be found under Eddie Lang in Early Jazz 3.

Red Nichols   1923

   I Cried for You

      With Howard Lanin

   My Sweetie Went Away

      With Howard Lanin

Red Nichols   1926


      With the Broadway Bell-Hops & Miff Mole

   Boneyard Shuffle

      The Red Heads


      The Red Heads

   Poor Papa

      The Red Heads

   Washboard Blues

      The Five Pennies

Red Nichols   1927

   Bugle Call Rag

      The Five Pennies

   Five Pennies

      With the Charleston Chasers

   I Ain't Got Nobody

      The Five Pennies

   Slippin' Around

      With Miff Mole


      With the Stompers

   Sugar Foot Strut

      With the Charleston Chasers

Red Nichols   1928


      The Five Pennies

Red Nichols   1931

   Haunting Blues

      The Five Pennies

   I Got Rhythm

      The Five Pennies   Vocals: Dick Robertson


  Born in 1895 in Cut Off, Louisiana, Jimmie Noone headed to New Orleans with his family at age fifteen, whence he switched from guitar to clarinet and studied with Lorenzo Tio and Sidney Bechet (age 13 at the time). His big break occurred in 1913 upon joining Freddie Keppard's Olympia Band, which he followed to Chicago. He there joined Ollie Powers' Harmony Syncoptors with which he laid five takes of 'Play That Thing' in September of '23. The next month he joined King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band, with whom he first recorded in October 1923 ('Chattanooga Stomp'). It was 1926 when Noone formed his Apex Club Orchestra of which pianist, Earl Hines, was a member (all of year 1928 below). Noone began recording for Vocalion in 1928. When the Apex Club was shut down upon a raid in 1929 Noone shuffled about other clubs in Chicago, NYC and New Orleans. In 1943 Noone moved to Los Angeles where he played with his band at the Café de Paris in Hollywood and performed on four broadcasts of 'The Orson Welles Almanac' radio show. On the morning he was to play the fifth show he died of heart attack, April 19, 1944. His last recordings had occurred in March for Capitol Records, for an album called 'New American Jazz'.

Jimmie Noone   1923

   Play That Thing

      With Ollie Powers' Harmony Syncoptors

Jimmie Noone   1926

   Love Found You For Me

      Cornet: Freddie Keppard

Jimmie Noone   1927

   Alligator Crawl

      Charles Doc Cook and his 14 Doctors of Syncopation

Jimmie Noone   1928

   Blues (My Naughty Sweetie Gives To Me)

   Every Evening

   Four Or Five Times

   I Know That You Know

   It's Tight Like That

   Sweet Lorraine

   Sweet Sue, Just You

Jimmie Noone   1929

   Love, Your Spell is Everywhere

Jimmie Noone   1936

   The Blues Jumped A Rabbit

      The New Orleans Band

   Sweet Georgia Brown

      The New Orleans Band

Jimmie Noone   1937

   I Know That You Know

Jimmie Noone   1940

   New Orleans Hop Scop Blues


Birth of Jazz: Jimmie Noone

Jimmie Noone

Source: MooPig Wisdom


Born in Aben Louisiana, in 1881, highly esteemed cornet player Joe King Oliver had known Buddy Bolden. Freddie Keppard was Oliver's chief rival in taking Bolden's place as New Orlean's premier bandleader upon Bolden's permanent hospitalization. Oliver took his wife and daughter to Chicago for the first time in 1918. In 1921 took his band to California where they played gigs in Oakland and San Francisco. Returning to Chicago the next year, he began calling his group the Creole Jazz Band. Oliver had been mentor to Louis Armstrong in earlier days in New Orleans, presenting his younger protégé with his first cornet. Now both Oliver and Armstrong would make their first recordings together on April 5, 1923, in Richmond, Indiana, along with Lil Hardin Armstrong on piano, Johnny Dodds on clarinet, Baby Dodds on drums, Honore Dutrey on trombone and Bud Scott at banjo, all of whom first recorded at that session. Those issued tracks were 'Just Gone', 'Canal Street Blues', 'Mandy Lee Blues', 'I'm Going to Ear You Off My Mind' and 'Chime Blues'. Some couple years later Oliver formed the Dixie Syncopators, his first issue with that ensemble being 'Deep Henderson' from a session on April 21, 1926, in Chicago. Among other big names with whom Oliver often recorded during the coming years were Clarence Williams and Sara Martin. Due to pyorrhea Oliver was forced to quit playing cornet in 1937. Having lost his life savings to a failed bank during the Great Depression, he then took custodial work in a pool hall in Savannah, becoming manager until his death of arteriosclerosis in April the next year.

King Oliver   1923

   Chimes Blues

   Canal Street Blues

   Dipper Mouth Blues

   Froggie Moore

   High Society

   I'm Going Away To Wear You Off My Mind

   Just Gone

   Mabel's Dream

   Riverside Blues

   Sobbin' Blues

   Southern Stomps

King Oliver   1927

   Big Butter and Egg Man

King Oliver   1928

   West End Blues

King Oliver   1929

   The Trumpet's Prayer

King Oliver   1930

   Don't You Think I Love You

   St. James Infirmary

   Shake It and Break It

King Oliver   1930

   Stealing Love


Birth of Jazz: King Oliver

King Oliver


Born in Chicago in 1903, drummer Ben Pollack began his career large with the New Orleans Rhythm Kings, his first recordings with that outfit on March 21, 1923, in Richmond, IN, for Gennett Records, weary Blues' among them. Three more full sessions with NORK followed to July before Pollack formed his own band called the Californians and made a test recording, probably for Golden Records in Los Angeles, in the summer of 1924. His next recordings with the Californians went unissued as well, on September 14, 1926, in Chicago. Pollack's first releases as a leader were recorded December 9, 1926, yielding 'When I first Met Mary' (vocal: Joey Ray) and 'Deed I Do' (vocal: Pollack). Those were also the first issues for Benny Goodman and Glenn Miller who were in Pollack's band. Pollack was popular during the period when jazz bands were expanding into swing orchestras. He took his band from Chicago to New York in 1928, but the Depression years found him touring the Midwest and Canada, albeit still in business and recording prolifically throughout throughout those years. Of note in 1937 were titles released with both the Rhythm Wreckers and Connie Boswell. In addition to music Pollack was a businessman. He had his own record label for a time (Jewel, not to be confused with the ARC label) and a string of restaurants in Hollywood and Palm Springs. Having contributed to a number of compositions since the New Orleans Rhythm Kings and featuring in several jazz films in the forties and fifties, Pollack hung himself in Palm Springs in 1971. Each 1923 title below is from Pollack's first session with the New Orleans Rhythm Kings.

Ben Pollack   1923

   Sweet Lovin' Man

   That's a Plenty

   Weary Blues

Ben Pollack   1927

   Deed I Do

      Clarinet: Benny Goodman

     2nd recording issued as a leader

   It's Tight Like That

      Clarinet: Benny Goodman

   Memphis Blues

   Waitin' For Katie

Ben Pollack   1928

   Sweet Sue-Just You

   Whoopee Stomp

Ben Pollack   1929

   Bashful Baby

   California Echoes/My Kind Of Love


   Song Of The Island



      With Smith Ballew

Ben Pollack   1929

   On With the Dance!

   Sweetheart We Need Each Other

   True Blue Lou

Ben Pollack   1931

   Sing Song Girl

Ben Pollack   1934

   The Beat of My Heart

Ben Pollack   1936

   Deep Elm

Ben Pollack   1937

   Alice Blue Gown

Ben Pollack   1951

   Gonna Stomp Mr. Henry Lee


Birth of Jazz: Ben Pollack

Ben Pollack

Photo: 1955 film 'The Benny Goodman Story'

Source: Harlem National Jazz Museum


Birth of Jazz: Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra

Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra

Source: Sooze Blues & Jazz

The Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra isn't known to have made more than four recordings (two in 1923, two in 1926), but it was an early Chicago band with which anybody who was anybody in the Chicago jazz scene played at one time or another (including Freddie Keppard, Louis Armstrong, Buster Bailey, Fats Waller, Teddy Wilson). Tate's orchestra accompanied silent movies at the Vendome Theatre and played during intercessions as well.

Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra   1923

   Chinaman Blues

   Cutie Blues

Erskine Tate Vendome Orchestra   1926

   Static Strut

   Stomp Off, Let's Go



Birth of Jazz: Fred Waring

Fred Waring

Photo: Ray Lee Jackson

Source: OTR Cat

Born in 1900 in Tyrone, Pennsylvania, Fred Waring formed the Waring-McClintock Snap Orchestra with his brother and a friend as a teenager. That band would become Fred Waring's Banjo Orchestra, which he led as a student at Penn State University. That band was such a success that Waring exchanged his aspiration to become an architect for music, forming Waring's Pennsylvanians in 1923. He first recorded as such that year, titles for Victor on October 15 ('Sleep' w 'That's My Baby') and 16 ('Stack O' Lee Blues' w 'The West, a Nest and You'). Waring was greatly popular on radio and would employ Pembroke Davenport as an arranger and pianist. Waring's recording career would last several decades as he shifted from the college crowd toward easy listening and popular. Discogs has him issuing a 7" as late as 1967: 'So Beats My Heart for You' and 'A Cigarette, Sweet Music and You'. Discogs also has Waring releasing dozens of albums as late as 'Jingle Bells' in 1980. Waring, however, had long since overcome any need to pursue music as a living. In 1938 he had invested $25,000 in a patent filed by inventor, Frederick Osius, and the Waring Blendor, originally named the Miracle Mixer, was launched. Selling for $29.75, in those days only hospitals and such could afford one. But by the fifties, already wealthy from music, Waring's ownership of Waring Blendor made him a millionaire a few times over. In 1943 he bought a resort in Shawnee, Delaware, that he renamed the Shawnee Inn, from which he aired performances throughout the fifties. In 1947 Waring began teaching choral singing, an occupation he pursued until his death. Waring also owned the Shawnee Press music publishing company. From 1948 to 1954 Waring hosted the television program, 'The Fred Waring Show'. Remaining popular into the sixties and seventies, Waring toured heavily into his later years. He died of stroke in 1984 at the same place where he began his lively career, Penn State, after videotaping a performance during a choral workshop. Beyond music and business Waring's big love was cartoon strips, his collection of several hundred originals on exhibition at Penn State.

Fred Waring   1923


Fred Waring   1924

   Annie Dear

   Down Home Blues

   June Night


   Memory Lane

   Nashville Nightingale

   Oh Baby

   Stack O' Lee Blues

Fred Waring   1925

   At the End of the Road



Fred Waring   1926

   After I Say I'm Sorry

   Any Ice To-Day, Lady?

   Cherie, I Love You

   In the Middle of The Night

   It Made You Happy When You Made Me Cry

   Moonlight and Roses

   To-Night's My Night With Baby

Fred Waring   1927

   I Scream You Scream We All Scream For Ice Cream

   Just Another Day Wasted Away

   The Sweetheart of Sigma Chi

Fred Waring   1928

   Ah! Sweet Mystery of Life



   Hello Montreal

   Laugh! Clown, Laugh!


   Was It a Dream?

   Who's Blue Now?

Fred Waring   1929


Fred Waring   1930

   Little White Lies

   Love For Sale

      Original composition: Cole Porter

Fred Waring   1931

   Dancing in the Dark

Fred Waring   1942

   This Is My Country

Fred Waring   1947

   Nutcracker Suite

Fred Waring   1951

   Flahooley Medley

      'Fred Waring Show'


  Born in New York, in1903, Spiegle Willcox, trombone, was a teenager when he joined a group called the Big Four in Syracuse, New York. Paul Whiteman took note, joined the band, then became its leader, whence the Big Four became the Collegians, recording in 1923. A couple of years later Willcox became a featured soloist in the Jean Goldkette Orchestra. Wilcox retired from the music industry in 1927 to work in his father's coal business, although he continued to lead amateur groups on weekends for the next several decades. In 1975 he came out of retirement to perform at Carnegie Hall with a reunion of Goldkette's orchestra, then formed a partnership with Joe Venuti until Venuti's death in 1978. Wilcox died in 1999 in Cortland, New York.

Spiegle Willcox   1923

   I Cried For You

      The Collegians

   That Red Head Gal

      The Collegians

Spiegle Willcox   1926

   Cover Me Up With Sunshine

      Jean Goldkette Orchestra

   Lonesome and Sorry

      Jean Goldkette Orchestra

Spiegle Willcox   1927

   Proud of a Baby Like You

      Jean Goldkette Orchestra

   Gonna Meet My Sweetie Now

      Jean Goldkette Orchestra

Spiegle Willcox   1987

   My Pretty Girl

      With the Nighthawks

Spiegle Willcox   1998

   Basin St Blues

      With Hot Five Jazzmakers


      With Hot Five Jazzmakers


Birth of Jazz: Spiegle Willcox

Spiegle Willcox

Photo: Wilcox Archives/SUNY Cortland

Source: Bix Beiderbecke


Born Leon Bismark Beiderbecke in 1903 in Davenport, Iowa, Bix Beiderbecke, cornetist (also piano), rivaled trumpeter Louis Armstrong as a horn player. 'Fidgety Feet', 'Lazy Daddy', 'Sensation Rag' and 'Jazz Me Blues' were Beiderbecke's first recordings with the Wolverines in 1924 in Richmond, Indiana. He recorded a couple tracks that year as well with Frank Trumbauer in the Sioux City Six. It was also 1924 that he began recording with the Jean Goldkette Orchestra, working with both Trumbauer and Goldkette until joining the Paul Whiteman outfit in 1927. Due to declining health Beiderbecke had to quit Whiteman in 1930. He made his last recordings on September 15 that year in NYC with Hoagy Carmichael. From among those four tracks 'Georgia on My Mind' would make the Grammy Hall of Fame in 2014. Slammed by a double whammy of alcoholism and pneumonia, Beiderbecke died in his prime in 1931, only 28 years of age. He plays cornet in all the samples below except 'In a Mist' in which he is the pianist.

Bix Beiderbecke   1924

   Buddy's Habits

      With Muggsy Spanier & the Bucktown Five


   Fidgety Feet

      Thought to be Beiderbecke's 1st recording

   Jazz Me Blues

   Someday, Sweetheart

      With Muggsy Spanier & the Bucktown Five

   Steady Roll Blues

      With Muggsy Spanier & the Bucktown Five

   Tia Juana

Bix Beiderbecke   1925

   Flock o' Blues

Bix Beiderbecke   1927

   Singin' the Blues

      With Frankie Trumbaur

   In a Mist

   I'm Coming Virginia

   I'm Wondering Who


Bix Beiderbecke   1928

   Felix The Cat

      With Paul Whiteman

   Krazy Kat

Bix Beiderbecke   1930

   Georgia On My Mind

      Composition: Hoagy Carmichael

      Vocal: Hoagy Carmichael


Birth of Jazz: Bix Beiderbecke

Bix Beiderbecke

Source: Herb Musem

  Born in 1902 in New York City, pianist and bandleader Rube (Reuben) Bloom first saw vinyl with the band of Sam Lanin on the Okeh label in 1924: 'Oh! Baby' ('Big Boy' from that session thought unissued). Bloom laid tracks with numerous groups that year, including Bix Beiderbecke's Sioux City Six: 'Flock' o' Blues' and 'I'm Glad', those for Gennett Records. Thus began one of his more important musical relationships, being Frank Trumbauer, then violinist, Joe Venuti, also recording with Venuti's Blue Four in 1928. The next year ('29) Bloom recorded a couple of tracks with his own band called the Bayou Boys: 'The Man from the South' and 'St. James Infirmary'. About that time violinist, Ben Selvin, became a major comrade as well. Bloom would also back a number of vocalists from Ruth Etting, Annette Hanshaw, Ethel Waters and Grace Johnson to Lee Morse and Johnny Mercer. Bloom largely retired from performing jazz in the thirties as he concentrated on composing. He died in the city of his birth, NYC, in 1976.

Rube Bloom   1924

   Georgia Blues

      With the Arkansas Travelers

   Lost My Baby Blues

      With the Arkansas Travelers

Rube Bloom   1925

   The Camel Walk

      With the Hottentots

   Down and Out Blues

      With the Hottentots

   Those Panama Mamas

      With the Tennessee Tooters

Rube Bloom   1927


      Piano solo

Rube Bloom   1928

   Futuristic Rag

      Piano roll   Composed 1923

   Jumping Jack

Rube Bloom   1930

   Bessie Couldn't Help It

   The Man From the South

   Mysterious Mose

   On Revival Day

   St. James Infirmary

   There's a Wah Wah Gal In Agua Caliente


Birth of Jazz: Rube Bloom

Rube Bloom

Source: Billie Holiday Songs

Birth of Jazz: Benny Carter

Benny Carter

Photo: Rutgers University

Source: Riverwalk Jazz

New York-born (1907) Benny Carter began his jazz career in Harlem in 1924 as a sideman with various bands needing a horn player. (Carter played sax, clarinet and trumpet). He first recorded with the Charlie Johnson Paradise Ten in 1927. In 1929 Carter joined the Chocolate Dandies (the earliest recordings by Carter with that group below), in which he began to distinguish himself as a musician of whom to take note. In 1933 he began a collaborative partnership with Spike Hughes who came from Great Britain to New York City with the intention of recording with the best black American musicians. Carter began a three-year tour of Europe in 1935. Upon returning to the States he started playing the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem in 1939 while arranging for some of the biggest names in swing jazz. He moved to Los Angeles in 1943 where he continued arranging while composing music for films. In 1960 Carter toured Australia. In 1969 he began lecturing at various universities, including Princeton and Harvard. (Carter was awarded honorary doctorates by Princeton, Rutgers, Harvard and the New England Conservatory). Carter's recording career spanned eight decades before his death of bronchitis in 2003.

Benny Carter   1927

   Birmingham Black Bottom

      Charlie Johnson Paradise Ten

     Vocal: Monette Moore

   Paradise Wobble

      Charlie Johnson Paradise Ten

     Vocal: Monette Moore

     Thought to be Carter's 1st recording

Benny Carter   1929

   That's How I Feel Today

      Chocolate Dandies

Benny Carter   1930

   Cloudy Skies

      Chocolate Dandies

   Goody Blues

      Chocolate Dandies

Benny Carter   1936

   Memphis Blues

      With the Kai Ewans Orchestra

Benny Carter   1941

   My Favourite Blues

Benny Carter   1966

   Blue Lou

      Filmed live Jazz at the Philharmonic

Benny Carter   1976


      With Dizzy Gillespie

   Live in Bercelona

      Concert with Earl Hines



Birth of Jazz: Doc Cook

Doc Cook

Source: Red Hot Jazz

Born Charles L. Cooke in 1891 in Louisville, Kentucky, arranger and band leader Doc Cook first recorded in 1924 for Gennett label (none found), two years before earning his doctorate in music from the Chicago Musical College (1926). Cook had early worked as an arranger and composer in Detroit until moving to Chicago circa 1910. In 1922 he became leader of the resident band at the Dreamland Ballroom for the next five years. Freddie Keppard and Jimmie Noone would pass through that orchestra. Cook left Chicago for New York City in 1930 to work as an arranger for Radio City Music Hall and RKO. He worked in radio for more than a decade as he began composing for Broadway musicals, including 'Hot Mikado' in 1939, and later collaborating with Eubie Blake in that capacity. Doc Cook died on Christmas day in 1958.

Doc Cook   1924

   Lonely Little Wallflower

   Maybe Man

   My Daddy Rocks Me ( With One Steady Roll)

   The One I Love Belongs To Somebody Else

   So This Is Venice

   High Fever

Doc Cook   1926

   Brown Sugar

   Love Found You for Me

   Sidewalk Blues

Doc Cook   1927

   Slue Foot

   Willie the Weeper


  Born in 1893 in France, then spending his childhood in Greece and Russia, bandleader Jean Goldkette emigrated to the United States in 1911. Studied in classical piano, Goldkette is reported to have made at least one piano roll in 1916 ('La Seduccion') for a company called Imperial. But the thing for Goldkette was putting bands together. By the time he made his earliest known recordings in March of 1924 for Victor he had formed at least twenty. His own main band for which he was most noted employed numerous big names in early jazz, including Bix Beiderbecke, Joe Venuti, Eddie Lang, Pee Wee Russell and Spiegle Willcox. Goldkette had also put together the Cotton Pickers and Glen Gray's Orange Blossoms (which would become the Casa Loma Orchestra that can be found in Jazz 2 under Glen Gray). For all Goldkette's musical abilities he seemed to be financially cursed, from inability to get his musicians paid to later filing bankruptcy with a total wealth of forty cents. In the latter thirties Goldkette returned to classical piano, organizing the American Symphony Orchestra in 1939 to debut at Carnegie Hall. Goldkette moved to California in 1961 and died of heart attack the following year in Santa Barbara.

Jean Goldkette   1924

  I Didn't Know

   In the Evening

     Thought to be Goldkette's 1st recording

Jean Goldkette   1926


   I'd Rather Be The Girl In Your Arms



Jean Goldkette   1927

   Here Comes the Show Boat

   So Tired

   Sunny Disposish

Jean Goldkette   1928

   Just Imagine

   That's What I Call Sweet Music

Jean Goldkette   1929

   Birmingham Bertha

   Painting The Clouds With Sunshine

   She's Funny That Way


Birth of Jazz: Jean Goldkette

Jean Goldkette

Source: Michihisa Ishikawa


Born in 1895 in Steubenville, Ohio, Paul Howard, played all variety of horn though focused on saxophone. In 1911 he headed for Los Angeles and started his professional career in 1916, first joining Wood Wilson's Syncopators, then Satchel McVea's Howdy Entertainers. He is said to have first recorded on alto sax in 1922 with the Quality Four led by Harvey Brooks, backing vocalist, Jessie Derrick. But we can find no record of such until circa February of 1924, two of the tunes in that session being the presumed instrumental, 'Down on the Farm', and 'Mistreatin' Daddy' with Derrick. The next year Howard signed on with Sonny Clay for a bit before forming the Quality Serenaders. The Serenaders didn't record, however, until April of 1929. The band's first issues were from its second session on the 28th: 'The Ramble' and 'Midnight Blues'. The Serenaders released about thirteen tracks during its existence into 1930. Upon disbanding the Serenaders Howard played in  various bands, including Lionel Hampton's in 1935, who had been a drummer in the Serenaders. In 1939 Howard formed the house band at a place called Virginia's in Los Angeles, performing there until 1953. Howard died in Los Angeles in 1980.

Paul Howard   1924

   Mistreatin' Daddy

     With Harvey Brooks & Jessie Derrick

     Thought to be Howards' 2nd recording issued

Paul Howard   1929

  Moonlight Blues

  Overnight Blues

  Quality Shout

   The Ramble

Paul Howard   1930

   California Swing

   Gettin' Ready Blues



Birth of Jazz: Hal Kemp

Hal Kemp

Source: Kenosha Theatre

Born in 1904 in Marion, Alabama, Hal Kemp was a student at the University of North Carolina when he formed the Carolina Club Orchestra, with which he began recording in August of 1924, his first labels Columbia and Pathé/Perfect. The first two tracks in that session were 'Aren't You Ashamed?' and 'Charleston Cabin'. Kemp also toured Europe in 1924 with the Carolina Club Orchestra. He toured Europe again in 1930. During the Depression Kemp shifted from playing for the college audience to dance music. Unfortunately, while on his way to a gig in San Francisco in 1940 he had a head-on collision with a truck and died two days later in the hospital.

Hal Kemp   1924

   Red Hot Mama

     Kemp's 3rd track from 1st recording session

Hal Kemp   1926

   A Little Girl A little Boy A Little Moon

   Brown Sugar

Hal Kemp   1928

   I Don't Care


   Oh Baby!

   She's a Great Great Girl

   Washington and Lee Swing

Hal Kemp   1929

   How I'll Miss You

   Shine On Harvest Moon

   To Be In Love

   When My Dreams Come True

Hal Kemp   1930

   Forty Second Street

   Them There Eyes

Hal Kemp   1931

   Afraid to Dream

      Vocal: Alice Faye

   I Found a Million Dollar Baby

   Moonlight Saving Time

   Sing a Little


Hal Kemp   1933

   Boulevard of Broken Dreams

Hal Kemp   1934

   You're the Top

Hal Kemp   1935


      Vocal: Maxine Grey

Hal Kemp   1936

   Gloomy Sunday


      Radio broadcast

Hal Kemp   1937

   Got A Date With An Angel

      Vocal: Skinnay Ennis

   With Plenty of Money and You

Hal Kemp   1938

   F.D.R. Jones

Hal Kemp   1939

   Don't Worry 'Bout Me

      Vocal: Bob Allen

   In an 18th Century Drawing Room

      Live performance



Birth of Jazz: Guy Lombardo

Guy Lombardo

Source: Britannica

Canadian violinist Guy Lombardo first recorded with his brother Carmen (flute and sax) in 1924 ('So This Is Venice' - unfound.) His big break came in Chicago in 1927, paying a radio station to broadcast fifteen minutes of his band's (later called the Royal Canadians) performance at the Granada Cafe. This created a stir such that people listening to the broadcast went to the Granada and packed it. The radio station meanwhile received so many phone calls that it decided to broadcast Lombardo's performance later into the evening. Lombardo decided it was time to exchange his violin for a baton and gained booking at the Roosevelt Hotel in New York City in 1929, where began the tradition for which Lombardo became famous: both CBS and NBC broadcasted the Royal Canadian's rendition of 'Auld Lang Syne' at midnight on New Year's Eve. Not only would Lombardo continue performing 'Auld Lang Syne' at the stroke of midnight each new year (for the next thirty-seven years until his death in 1966), but all the English-speaking world would celebrate the same, making 'Auld Lang Syne' one of the most significant songs ever written (ostensibly composed by Robert Burns in 1788, fitted to an old English or Scottish folk melody). Beyond music, Lombardo's second love was speedboat racing, winning every trophy in the field, including the Gold Cup in 1946. Lombardo died in 1977 in Houston.

Guy Lombardo   1928

   Nobody's Sweetheart

Guy Lombardo   1929

   Auld Lang Syne

       Later performance   Date uncertain

   College Medley Fox Trot

Guy Lombardo   1931

   Too Late

Guy Lombardo   1932

   How Deep Is the Ocean

Guy Lombardo   1933

   Love Me Or Leave Me

Guy Lombardo   1935

   Red Sails In the Sunset

Guy Lombardo   1938

   Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen


  Born Joseph Matthews Manone in 1900, composer, trumpeter and vocalist Wingy Manone got his name due to losing an arm during a streetcar accident. He used a prosthesis as a result, hardly anyone noticing during performances. A favored session player (such as Benny Goodman), Manone made his debut recording in 1924 with the Arcadian Serenaders. The next year he formed the San Sue Strutters, recording several tracks with that outfit in Chicago in November. He laid tracks as Joe Manone's Harmony Kings in April 1927 before recording with Red Nichols' Red Heads in September. He would appear on tracks by Red Nichols' Five Pennies in 1930 as well. 1934 saw him contributing to numerous tunes by the New Orleans Rhythm Kings. Manone issued recordings prodigiously during his career. His autobiography, 'Trumpet on the Wing', was published in 1948, long before his retirement from the music industry. Manone recorded as late as 1975 per the album, 'Jazz from Italy', with guitarist, Lino Patruno, and the Milan College Jazz Society. He died in 1982 in Las Vegas, where he had lived since 1954.

Wingy Manone   1924

   Bobbed Her Bobbie (Bobbie Me Mine)

      With the Arcadian Serenaders

     3rd track from Manone's 1st recording session

Wingy Manone   1925

   Back Home In Illinois

      With the Arcadian Serenaders

   Just A Little Bit Bad

      With the Arcadian Serenaders

   Yes Sir, Boss

      With the Arcadian Serenaders

Wingy Manone   1930

   Weary Blues

      As Barbecue Joe and his Hot Dogs

   Up The Country Blues

      As Barbecue Joe and his Hot Dogs

   Wailing Blues

      With the Cellar Boys

Wingy Manone   1935

   Black Coffee

   Isle of Capri

   I've Got My Fingers Crossed

   Swing Brother Swing

Wingy Manone   1938

   Ochi Chornya

Wingy Manone   1939

   Downright Disgusted Blues


Birth of Jazz: Wingy Manone

Wingy Manone

Source: Planet Barberella


Born Charles Ellsworth Russell in 1907 in Maplewood, Missouri, clarinetist Pee Wee Russell began working professionally in 1922, touring river boats and tent shows. He is thought to have first recorded in St. Louis in 1924 with Herb Berger (unfound). In 1925 he headed for Chicago where he played with such as Bix Beiderbecke and Frank Trumbauer. In 1926 he joined Jean Goldkette's orchestra. Russell first recorded with cornetist, Red Nichols, on April 2, 1927. Those tracks ('The Doll Dance' and 'Delirium') were released under the imaginary leadership of Carl Fenton. "Carl Fenton" had originally been the pseudonym of Brunswick musical director, Gus Haenschen, in 1919. But Brunswick began attaching "Carl Fenton" to records with which Haenschen had nothing to do (including the above) when it needed the name of a bandleader. Ruby Greenberg, violinist and musical director for Gennett Records, bought the rights to use "Carl Fenton" on recordings from '27 to '30. "Carl Fenton" was used on records as late as 1937 by, it is thought, Red Nichols as a joke. Be as may, Russell would next record with Nichols in August of '27, Nichols having formed his Five Pennies by that time. Russell released his first issues as a leader in 1938 with his Rhythmakers. With Max Kaminsky on trumpet, 'Dinah' was among those eight tracks. In 1952 Russell issued the album, 'Clarinet Strut'. Russell had been no slouch. Together with his own recordings he contributed to countless tunes by a host of the Who's Who of jazz during his career, several among them being Coleman Hawkins, Miff Mole, Jack Teagarden, Billy Banks (vocalist), Eddie Condon, Bobby Hackett, Louis Prima, Teddy Wilson, Bud Freeman, Wild Bill Davison, Muggsy Spanier, the Stuyvesant Stompers (George Wetting: drums), Max Kaminsky, Ruby Braff and Buck Clayton. Russell's last gig was President Nixon's inaugural ball in 1969, three weeks before his death in Alexandria, Virginia. More Pee Wee Russell in Jazz 5.

Pee Wee Russell   1927

   The Charleston Chasers

      With Red Nichols


      With Red Nichols

   Doll Dance

      With Red Nichols


      With Red Nichols

   Feelin' No Pain

      Trombone: Miff Mole

   Ida! Sweet As Apple Cider

      With Red Nichols

Pee Wee Russell   1929

   Hello Lola

      Comb: Red McKenzie   Sax: Coleman Hawkins

Pee Wee Russell   1944

   Ballin' the Jack

      Trombone: Miff Mole

Pee Wee Russell   1957

   Blues My Naughty Sweetie Gives to Me

      Filmed live

   I Can't Get Started

      Trumpet: Ruby Braff

Pee Wee Russell   1958

   I Can't Get Started

      Trumpet: Ruby Braff

Pee Wee Russell   1960


Pee Wee Russell   1961

   Pee Wee's Blues

      Trumpet: Buck Clayton

   The Very Thought of You

Pee Wee Russell   1963

   Twice As Nice

      Filmed live

Pee Wee Russell   1966

   Blue Monk

      Trumpet: Henry Red Allen

Pee Wee Russell   1966

   Meet Me In Chicago

      Filmed live


Birth of Jazz: Pee Wee Russell

Pee Wee Russell

Source: Britannica

Birth of Jazz: Muggsy Spanier

Muggsy Spanier

Source: Jango

Born Francis Joseph Julian Spanier in Chicago in 1901, Dixieland cornetist Muggsy Spanier's professional career began in 1921 with Elmer Schoebel's band. Spanier later made his first recordings with the Bucktown Five on February 25, 1924, in Chicago, among those titles issued 'Mobile Blues', 'Chicago Blues' and 'Someday Sweetheart'. That was followed by a session for Autograph with the Stomp Six about July. The Stomp Six was a band that had no existence outside the recording studio. Issued from that was 'Why Can't It Be Poor Little Me?' and 'Everybody Loves My Baby'. Lord's discography doesn't show him recording again until February of 1928 with Charles Pierce and his Orchestra, to issue 'Bull Frog Blues' and 'China Boy'. His initial recordings with the Chicago Rhythm Kings occurred in Chicago in March of 1928, but Vocalion didn't issue those. Besides Spanier at trumpet that band consisted of Frank Teschmacher (clarinet), Mezz Mezzrow (tenor sax), Joe Sullivan (piano), Eddie Condon (banjo), Jim Lannigan (tuba), Red McKenzie (vocals), and Gene Krupa (drums). Their next session on April 6 wrought 'There'll Be Some Changes Made' and 'I've Found a New Baby'. That group recorded as the Jungle Kings on the 28th of April, yielding 'Friar's Point Shuffle' and 'At the Darktown Strutter's Ball'. Spanier recorded with the band of Ted Lewis from May 1929 to July 1933. Spanier's first recordings as a leader in New Orleans went unissued until years later. His next, upon the formation of his Ragtime Band, were issued in 1939 from a session on July 7 in Chicago. Age 38 at the time, Spanier recorded prolifically with his own bands into the sixties. He had also backed vocalist, Connie Boswell, in '37 and '40. He recorded with the Rhythm Wreckers in '37 as well. Spanier had first laid tracks with Sidney Bechet, Pee Wee Russell and Lee Wiley in 1940. Also notable in Spanier's career were pianist, Earl Hines, with whom he first worked in 1945, later to become a member of Spanier's band. Both Eddie Condon and Joe Sullivan, both with whom he'd first recorded in '28 with the Chicago Rhythm Kings remained significant associates. Upright bassist, Pops Foster, was a large figure in Spanier's career in the forties and fifties. Spanier passed away in 1967 in Sausalito, CA. Per 1924 below, all tracks are with the Bucktown Five. Cornet on 'Someday, Sweetheart' is incorrectly credited to Bix Beiderbecke instead of Spanier.

Muggsy Spanier   1925

   Mobile Blues

  Someday, Sweetheart

  Steady Roll Blues

Muggsy Spanier   1925

   Everybody Loves My Baby

Muggsy Spanier   1928

   There'll Be Some Changes Made

   I've Found A New Baby

Muggsy Spanier   1939

   Big Butter and Egg Man

   Dipper Mouth Blues

   I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate

   Lonesome Road

   Relaxin' at the Touro

   That Da Da Strain

Muggsy Spanier   1943

   Sweet Lorraine

Muggsy Spanier   1944

   Pat's Blues

   Alice Blue Gown

   Memphis Blues

   Snag It

   Sweet Sue, Just or You

Muggsy Spanier   1945

   Sweet Georgia Brown

Muggsy Spanier   1951


Muggsy Spanier   1954


   My Monday Date

   Ugly Child


  Born in 1901 in Pitcairn, Pennsylvania, bandleader Ted Weems played both trombone and violin. Initially studying to become a civil engineer, he changed direction when he and his brother, Art, formed a band in college and began receiving invitations from hotels throughout the nation to play at their venues. In 1921 his band played at Warren Harding's inaugural ball. Ted and Art recorded an unissued track in NYC for Columbia in May of 1922. Not until a session on November 20 of '23 did the Weems see issue, probably in January of '24, those with Victor: 'Covered Wagon Days' and 'Somebody Stole My Gal'. The Weems issued 12 more titles in '24, gradually increasing in years thereafter. In 1928 Weems took his orchestra to Chicago where he broke into radio in the early thirties, performing on Jack Benny's 'Canada Dry', 'Fibber McGee & Molly' in the latter thirties and 'Beat the Band' in the early forties. It was Weems who brought Perry Como his major break (after first touring with Fred Carlone for three years), Como also first recording in 1936 with Weem's orchestra. In 1942 Weems and his whole band joined the Merchant Marine, his orchestra then to become the Merchant Marine Band until 1945 (two band members killed). Weems then toured the States until 1953 when he took employment as a disc jockey in Memphis, then a manager for Holiday Inn. Weems was operating a talent agency in Dallas, and had taken his band to an engagement in Tulsa, when he died there, of emphysema, in 1963. Tracks below are alphabetical by year.

Ted Weems   1924

   Blue Eyed Sally

   Covered Wagon Days

   Somebody Stole My Gal

Ted Weems   1926

   I'm Going To Park Myself In Your Arms

   My Cutie's Due at Two To-Two To-Day

   Oh! If I Only Had You

Ted Weems   1927


   Cobble Stones


   Miss Annabelle Lee

   She's Got It

Ted Weems   1928

   Baby Doll

   You're the Cream in My Coffee

      Vocal: Parker Gibbs

Ted Weems   1929

   It Was Only A Sun Shower

   Piccolo Pete

   Remarkable Girl

Ted Weems   1930

   Washing Dishes With My Sweetie

Ted Weems   1933

   The Boulevard Of Broken Dreams

Ted Weems   1934

   Winter Wonderland

Ted Weems   1936

   When a Lady Meets A Gentleman Down South

Ted Weems   1938


Ted Weems   1939

   I Wonder Who's Kissing Her Now

      Vocal: Perry Como

Ted Weems   1947


      Vocal: Bob Edwards   Whistling: Elmo Tanner


Birth of Jazz: Ted Weems

Ted Weems

Photo: James J. Kriegsmann

Source: Los Angeles Times

Birth of Jazz: Roger Kahn

Roger Wolfe Kahn

Source: Planet Barbarella

Roger Wolfe Kahn was born in Morristown, NJ, in 1907 to a wealthy Jewish banking family. Playing multiple instruments, Khan was only 16 when he put together his own orchestra. First recording for Victor Records in 1925 ('Hot-Hot-Hottentot' and 'Yearning'), Kahn released tracks steadily until sixteen years later (1941) he shelved his baton to pursue aviation as a test pilot. Kahn died in 1962 in New York City, having recorded popularly for Victor, Brunswick and Columbia.

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1925

   A Cup of Coffee, A Sandwich, and You

   Hot Hot Hottentot

     Kahn's 1st issue

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1926

   At Peace With the World

   Clap Yo'Hands

   I'd Climb the Highest Mountain

   Way Down Yonder in New Orleans

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1927

   Following You Around

   The Magical Step of Love

   Russian Lullaby

   South Wind

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1928

   Crazy Rhythm


   An Old Guitar and An Old Refrain

   A Room With a View

   Say Yes Today

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1929

   'tWas Not So Long Ago

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1930

   Cheer Up, Good Times Are Coming

Roger Wolfe Kahn   1932

   It Don't Mean a Thing

   Just A Little Home For The Old Folks

   Lazy Day

   Sheltered By the Stars

   A Shine On Your Shoes


  Born in Chicago in 1907, cornetist Jimmy McPartland received his big break at age 17 (1924) when he was asked to be the replacement for Bix Beiderbecke in the Wolverine Orchestra, with which he first recorded on December 5, 1924, presumably issued the next year. That tune was 'When My Sugar Walks Down the Street' with vocals by Dave Harmon added. McPartland stuck with the Wolverines until latter 1927, 'The New Twister' among the last tracks of his last session with that band in October. In December that year he contributed cornet to grooves by Ben Pollack and his Orchestra before signing up with Eddie Condon's Chicagoans also led by Red McKenzie. McPartland first recorded as a bandleader in April of '36, ramrodding the Squirrels, those tracks being 'Eccentric' and 'Original Dixieland One-Step'. In 1944 McPartland would marry the pianist Marian McPartland (who can be found in Jazz 6). Marian first laid tracks with Jimmy in London on January 6, 1946, featuring guitarist, Vic Lewis, for Harlequin. Among the bigger names with whom McPartland worked during his career were Benny Goodman with whom he'd first recorded in '27 with Pollack, Jack Teagarden and Glenn Miller likewise. In November of 1952 he recorded the album, 'Hot Versus Cool', with Dizzy Gillespie and the Cool Jazz Stars. Tom Lord has McPartland recording as late as June 22, 1986, a live performance at Town Hall in NYC to be issued on the album by various artists, 'Chicago Jazz Summit'. McPartland died of lung cancer in 1999 in Port Washington, New York. On the bottom two tracks below McPartland plays trumpet rather than cornet.

Jimmy McPartland   1924

   When My Sugar Walks Down the Street

      With the Wolverine Orchestra

     McPartland's 1st issued recording

Jimmy McPartland   1927

   A Good Man Is Hard To Find

      With the Wolverine Orchestra


      With the Chicagoans

Jimmy McPartland   1928

   Digga Digga Do

      With the Hotsy Totsy Gang   Vocal: Elizabeth Welch

   Since You Went Away

       Vocal: Irving Mills as Milton Irving

       With the Hotsy Totsy Gang

Jimmy McPartland   1939

   China Boy

Jimmy McPartland   1954

   Ballin' the Jack

   Royal Garden Blues


Birth of Jazz: Jimmy McPartland

Jimmy McPartland

Source: Discogs

Birth of Jazz: Irving Mills

Irving Mills

Source: Hit of the Week

Born Isadore Minsky in 1894, Irving Mills first recorded in 1925 upon meeting Duke Ellington. Though a singer (top and bottom tracks below), Mills resides on this page as mainly a band director, arranger, lyricist, music publisher and businessman, his talent in forming, managing and promoting bands. In 1919 Mills founded the music publishing company, Jack Mills Inc., with his brother Jack (to become Mills Music Inc. in 1928). It was Mills who got Duke Ellington booked at the Cotton Club in 1927, and he would come to own half of Duke Ellington Inc., managing Ellington until 1939. Before that, however, Mills formed a subgroup out of Ellington's band which he called the Hotsy Totsy Boys, participating (kazoo, vocals) in the recording of 'Everything Is Hotsy Totsy Now' for Blu-Disc (T1001) on June 8, 1925. It's thought that it was Mills who named Red Nichols' band the Five Pennies in 1926. Though Mills worked largely in a business capacity he contributed to numerous vocals with Ellington, Ellington "bands within a band" and his own groups. Tom Lord has Mills next recording vocals with an Ellington subgroup called the Footwarmers in NYC on July 10, 1928, releasing 'Diga Diga Doo' and 'Doin' the New Lowdown'. Mill's own band was the popular Hotsy Totsy Gang, which variations included some of the biggest names in jazz: Jimmy Dorsey, Tommy Dorsey, Eddie Lang, Joe Venuti, Glenn Miller, Benny Goodman, Red Nichols. Mills contributed vocals to recordings by that group on January 14, 1929: 'Futuristic Rhythm' and 'Out Where the Blues Begin', instrumentals of those issued as well. In 1931 Mills formed another top band, the Mills Blue Rhythm Band, which played the Cotton Club and recorded 150 sides until its disbanding in 1938. In 1936 Mills founded the Master and Variety record labels, though sold to Brunswick and Vocalion the next year. Mills is also credited with the discovery of Blanche and Cab Calloway. In selections below in which he doesn't sing he is band director and/or arranger. More singing by Mills with his Hotsy Totsy Gang is found under Jimmy McPartland higher on this page.

Hotsy Totsy Boys   1925

   Everything Is Hotsy totsy Now

      Piano possibly by Duke Ellington

Irving Mills   1928


      With Jack Pettis and his Pets

   Bugle Call Rag

      Ben Pollack and his Whoopee Makers

   Since You Went Away

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

Irving Mills   1929

   Ain't Misbehavin'

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   Manhattan Rag

      Hotsy Totsy Gang


      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   My Little Honey And Me

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   Out Where The Blues Begin

      Hotsy Totsy Gang


      Original composition: Hoagy Carmichael

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   Sweet Savannah Sue

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

Irving Mills   1930

   Deep Harlem

      Hotsy Totsy Gang   Cornet: Bix Beiderbecke

   High and Dry

      Hotsy Totsy Gang   Piano: Hoagy Carmichael

   Loved One

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   Some Fun

      Hotsy Totsy Gang

   St. James Infirmary

      With Duke Ellington

   Strut Miss Lizzie

      Hotsy Totsy Gang


  Born in 1894 in Danville, Kentucky, Fess Williams, was a composer who played clarinet and sax, forming his first orchestra in 1919, age fifteen. He worked for Ollie Powers in Chicago in 1923 before forming the Royal Flush Orchestra, first recording in latter 1925 for Gennett Records. A session circa October has him issuing 'Green River Blues'. In December he recorded 'Caroline' and a couple takes of 'Some Other Time'. William's Royal Flush took residency at the Savoy Ballroom in 1926. In 1928 he took a different tack, temporarily leaving his Royal Flush in New York to form the Joy Boys in Chicago. On April 3, 1928, Williams' Joy Boys recorded 'Dixie Stomp' and 'Drifting and Dreaming' for Vocalion.      Back in New York, Williams' continued to record with his orchestra before waning in popularity, his band making its last recordings in 1930 for Victor, those thought to be 'Dinah', 'Just to Be with You Tonight' and 'Everything's OK with Me'. 1930 saw things quake in the music industry all around with the onset of the Great Depression. Some musicians were able to ride out those years while the careers of others cooled. Williams was among the latter. He would continue leading bands on occasion in decades to come but turned to selling real estate to make a living. Tom Lord's discography has Williams recording with Frankie Half Pint Jaxon, Lee Brown and Georgia White in 1940, then Sammy Price in December of '41 before largely disappearing into obscurity. Williams died in 1975 in New York.

Fess Williams   1925

   Wimmin - Aaah!

Fess Williams   1926

   Messin' Around

Fess Williams   1927

   Number Ten

   Ozark Blues

   Razor Edge

   Variety Stomp

Fess Williams   1929

   Ain't Misbehavin'

   Hot Mama

   Kentucky Blues

   Sweet Savannah Sue

Fess Williams   1930

   All For Grits And Gravy


   I'm Feeling Devilish

   Playing my Saxophone


Birth of Jazz: Fess Williams

Fess Williams

Source: Jazz Tour Database

  Born in 1902 in Panama, pianist Luis Russell began his professional career at age 17, accompanying silent films at theaters, then later a casino. In 1919 he won $3000 in a lottery and used it to take his mother and sister to New Orleans. In 1924 he moved to Chicago where he played with Doc Cook and King Oliver. Russell is thought to have first recorded in 1926, backing Ada Brown for Vocalion in Chicago on March 10 toward the release of 'Panama Limited Blues' and 'Tia Juana Man'. Russell first recorded as a leader that same day, having formed the Hot Six, of which Kid Ory was a member contributing trombone. Issued from that session were '29th and Dearborn' and 'Sweet Mumtaz'. Russell first recorded as a member of King Oliver's orchestra in Chicago on March 11, 1926, Ory also in session for two takes each of 'Too Bad' and 'Snag It'. He first laid tracks under Louis Armstrong's leadership with the latter's Savoy Ballroom Five (ten musicians in the group) on March 5, 1929, toward the issue of 'I Can't Give You Anything But Love' and 'Mahogany Hall Stomp'. Russell would work heavily with Armstrong in decades to come. Another giant name, Henry Red Allen, came Russell's way in 1929 as well, he first recording with Allen in the latter's New York Orchestra on July 16, 1929, toward the release of 'It Should Be You' and 'Billy Blues'. Blues singer, Victoria Spivey, was another of the larger names with whom Russell recorded during his career, he first backing her under Allen's leadership on September 24, 1929, to issue tracks of 'Make a Country Bird Fly Wild', 'Funny Feathers Blues', 'How Do They Do It That Way' and 'Pleasin' Paul'. In 1948 Russell largely retired from performing, opened a notions shop and began teaching piano. He died in 1961 in New York City.

Luis Russell   1926

   Sweet Mumtaz

Luis Russell   1929

   Feelin' the Spirit

      Featuring Bill Coleman on trumpet

   Jersey Lightning

      Featuring Henry Red Allen on trumpet

   The New Call Of the Freaks

      Trumpets: Henry Red Allen & Bill Coleman

Luis Russell   1930

   High Tension

Luis Russell   1931

   Goin' to Town

   You Rascal, You


Birth of Jazz: Luis Russell

Luis Russell

Source: Discogs

  Born in Georgia in 1908, trumpeter Jabbo Smith was sent to an orphanage in South Carolina at age six. He left that orphanage at age sixteen to begin a career in music, playing with a number of bands in various northeast cities until he went to New York City and made his first recordings, 1926 the earliest found, that with Thomas Morris on August 17, Victor master 20179. Tom Lord's discography has him accompanying Eva Taylor with Clarence Williams's Blue Five in a session for Okeh on February 10, 1927: 'I Wish You Would' and 'If I Could Be with You'. Smith also recorded with Duke Ellington in 1927, a session on November 10 witnessing 7 tracks of 3 titles: 'What Can a Poor Fellow Do?', 'Black and Tan Fantasy' and 'Chicago Stomp Down'. Smith was age 21 when he formed his own band, the Rhythm Aces, in 1929 after touring with James Johnson. It is thought his first session as a leader with the Aces was on January 29, yielding Jazz Battle'. Lord's discography has him recording as a leader on more than twenty occasions up to the Breda Jazz Festival in Netherlands in 1983. Smith left Chicago for Milwaukee in the thirties. 1937 found him recording with Claude Hopkins in NYC. Though he continued to record in New York he eventually took employment with a car rental agency. In 1961 he revived his career upon recording the 'Hidden Treasure" sessions. The latter seventies saw Smith recording with the Hot Dogs in Netherlands, beginning with the album, 'The Hot Dogs Meet Jabbo Smith', recorded in three sessions in Almelo and Breda in December of 1976. Smith toured into the eighties in both Europe and the United States. He died in 1991.

Jabbo Smith   1926

   Ham Gravy

      With Thomas Morris & His Seven Hot Babies

Jabbo Smith   1927

   I Wish You Would

      With Clarence Williams' Blue Five

     Vocal: Eva Taylor

Jabbo Smith   1928


      With the Louisiana Sugar Babes

      Piano: James Johnson

Jabbo Smith   1929

   Ace of Rhythms

      Mislabeled   Intended title: 'Aces of Rhythm'

   Boston Skuffle

   Jazz Battle

   Let's Get Together

   Take Your Time

   Tanguay Blues

Jabbo Smith   1982

   Little Willie Blues

      With the Hot Antic Jazz Band

Jabbo Smith   1982

   When You're Smiling

      With the Hot Antic Jazz Band


Birth of Jazz: Jabbo Smith

Jabbo Smith

Source: Riverwalk Jazz

  Born in 1900 in Chicago, arranger and bandleader Victor Young began playing piano at age six. But he began his career in 1920 largely as concert violinist and conductor. He first appeared on record in 1926, adding violin to tracks by Russo and Fiorito's Oriole Orchestra in Chicago on March 12: 'I Don't Believe It' and 'Let's Talk About My Sweetie'. In December the same year he recorded several titles in a couple of sessions with Ben Pollack, also in Chicago for Victor: 'When I First Met Mary', 'Deed I Do', 'You're the One for Me' and 'He's the Last Word'. Tom Lord's discography doesn't show Young recording again until the summer of 1929 with Isham Jones, those unissued. His first recordings to be released that year were with Jean Goldkette from a couple sessions in Chicago that summer, the second a radio broadcast with Goldkette's Eskimo Pie Orchestra. Young's first titles to be issued with Jones were from a session in October, yielding 'Song of the Blues' and 'Feeling the Way'. His next issues with Jones were 'Nina Rosa' and 'Your Smiles, Your Tears' from a session in February of 1930. Young's debut recordings as a conductor for the Boswell Sisters occurred April 23 of 1931 for Brunswick: 'Roll On, Mississippi, Roll On' and 'Shout, Sister, Shout'.    Tom Lord's discography has Young first recording as a leader on May 19, 1931: 'Two Little Blue Little Eyes' and 'Building a Home for You'. With Bunny Berigan and Tommy Dorsey thought to be in that band, with Smith Ballew adding vocals, the first track was issued as Melotone 12191, credited to Ed Lloyd and his Orchestra. The second track was issued as Brunswick 6126 with a second take of 'Two Little Blue Little Eyes', credited to the Jesse Stafford Orchestra. Who that particular Ed Lloyd may have been remains a discographical mystery at least to me. Jesse Stafford was a trombonist who assumed leadership of the Herb Wiedoeft Orchestra upon the latter's fatal auto accident, which became the Jessie Stafford Orchestra. Be as may, Young's first recordings with his Brunswick Orchestra were on May 22, 1931, yielding 'I Surrender Dear' and 'Star Dust' with the Boswell Sisters. A second session that day saw releases of 'Sing a Little Jingle' and 'I Found a Million Dollar Baby', also with the Boswells. Young would work as a band director for the American Recording Company, Brunswick its main imprint, and back the Boswells numerously, especially Connie. He also worked with such as Joe Venuti, Bing Crosby, Chick Bullock and Lee Wiley before moving to Hollywood in 1935 to compose for films. His first of such is thought to have been 'Anything Goes' released by Paramount in 1936. Among Young's last recordings was the soundtrack to Walt Disney's animated 'Lady and the Tramp'. The LP, 'Songs from Walt Disney's Lady and the Tramp' was released in 1955 with Peggy Lee. Young died the next year, only age 56, in Palm Springs of cerebral hemorrhage. (More Victor Young can be found under Lee Wiley in Swing Jazz 2.)

Victor Young   1926

   Let's Talk About My Sweetie

      Russo and Fiorito's Oriole Orchestra

Victor Young   1927

   Deed I Do

      With Ben Pollack

Victor Young   1930

   You're Driving Me Crazy

      With Nick Lucas

Victor Young   1931

   In the Candlelight

      With Dick Robertson

Victor Young   1932

   Can't Help Lovin' Dat Man

      With Helen Morgan

   A Shine On Your Shoes

Victor Young   1933

   Two Tickets To Georgia

       With Chick Bullock

Victor Young   1934

   Where Have We Met Before?

   The Very Thought Of You

Victor Young   1936

   The Call Of the Prairie

Victor Young   1949

   Samson and Delilah

      Film Score

Victor Young   1950

   When I Fall In Love

Victor Young   1952


      Film Score

Victor Young   1956

   Around the World In Eighty Days

      Film Score


Birth of Jazz: Victor Young

Victor Young

Source: Victor Young's Fan Web

Birth of Jazz: Henry Red Allen

Henry Red Allen

Source: Republic Pink

Born in 1906 in Algiers, Louisiana, trumpet player Henry Red Allen began his career in New Orleans playing with dance bands as a teenager. He moved on to Mississippi riverboats until his big break came in 1927, employed by Joe King Oliver. On June 7 of that year he recorded with Clarence Williams and His Bottomland Orchestra for Brunswick in New York City, two versions each of 'Slow River' and 'Zulu Wail'. Two of those sessions were also issued under the pseudonym, the Avalonians, by Vocalion (15577). Per Wikipedia, Allen joined the orchestra of Luis Russell in 1929, playing with him until 1932.     Per Tom Lord, Russell played piano and arranged for Allen's first tracks as a leader in 1929 with his New York Orchestra, recording versions of 'It Should Be You' and 'Biffly Blues' on July 16, followed the next day with sets of 'Feeling Drowsy' and 'Swing Out'. Allen also contributed to tracks with Victoria Spivey and the Four Wanderers that year. 1933 found Allen sharing duties as a leader with Coleman Hawkins.on numerous tunes. In 1940 he recorded 'Down in Jungle Town' and 'Canal Street Blues' with pianist and wife of Louis Armstrong, Lil Armstrong (Hardin), and clarinetist, Edmond Hall. From 1954 to 1965 Allen's was the house band at the Metropole Cafe in New York City. He didn't tour Europe until 1959 with Kid Ory. Allen's final tour of England was in 1967 where he made his last recordings in February and March with the Alex Welsh Band before returning to NYC, dying several weeks later on April 17.

Henry Red Allen   1927

   Slow River

     With Clarence Williams

   Zulu Wail

      With Clarence Williams

Henry Red Allen   1929

   Biff'ly Blues

   Doggin' That Thing

      With Walter Pichon

   Jersey Lightning

      With Luis Russell

   Won´t You Get Off Please

      With Fats Waller

   Feeling Drowsy

Henry Red Allen   1933

   Sweet Sue

      With Spike Hughes

Henry Red Allen   1934

   Body and Soul

Henry Red Allen   1935


      With the Mills Blue Rhythm Band

Henry Red Allen   1937

   Sentimental & Melancholy

      With Billie Holiday

Henry Red Allen   1941

   Jack the Bellboy

      Drums: Jim Hoskins

Henry Red Allen   1946

   Drink Hearty

Henry Red Allen   1957


Henry Red Allen   1958

   Them There Eyes

Henry Red Allen   1959

   Sugar Foot Stomp

      With Kid Ory

Henry Red Allen   1964


Henry Red Allen   1966

   St. James Infirmary

   All Of Me


  Born in in Alexandria, Virginia, in 1903, pianist Claude Hopkins is said to have not left home until age 21. Even so he is documented to have made a couple unissued recordings in New York City in 1922 with blues singer, Sara Martin. His first professional employment is generally given per leaving home with the Wilbur Sweatman Band in 1924. The major break in his career occurred in 1925 when he became director of The Review Negre, touring Europe with Josephine Baker and Sidney Bechet. Upon returning to the United States in 1927 he toured the vaudeville circuit, performing piano on recordings with Ma Rainey in Chicago in August of that year: 'Misery Blues', 'Dead Drunk Blues' and 'Slow Driving Moan'. Tom Lord has him next recording with Clarence Williams in September 1928: 'Walk That Broad' and 'Have You Ever Felt That Way?'. In 1932 Hopkins formed his own orchestra with which he first recorded in May: 'I Would Do Anything for You' and 'Mad Moments'. In addition to touring with that band Hopkins held residencies at the Savoy, the Roseland and the Cotton Club. In 1940 he broke up his band to begin arranging for CBS for several years, afterward filling out his career as a sideman in countless groups. Hopkins died in NYC in 1984.

Claude Hopkins   1927

   Dead Drunk Blues

     With Ma Rainey

     Hopkins' 2nd recording issued

   Misery Blues

     With Ma Rainey

     Hopkins' 1st recording issued

   Slow Driving Moan

     With Ma Rainey

     Hopkins' 3rd recording issued

Claude Hopkins   1932

   I Would Do Anything for You

     1st recording issued by Hopkin's orchestra

   Mush Mouth

Claude Hopkins   1934

   Just you, Just Me

Claude Hopkins   1936

   Tip Tap and Toe

Claude Hopkins   1937

   My Kinda Love

      With Betty White


Birth of Jazz: Claude Hopkins

Claude Hopkins


Born in 1899 in Chicago, though Mezz Mezzrow played saxophone he was better known as a clarinetist. He was also well known as a marijuana vendor, such that weed was called "mezz" among the jazz community. Be as may, it is thought Mezzrow first recorded in Chicago in December 1927 with Eddie Condon and Red McKenzie, followed by the Chicago Jungle Kings in March of 1928, also with Condon. (Condon is on all tracks below during the twenties.) Mezzrow appeared with Condon in various configurations into the latter twenties, the latter thirties as well. His debut recordings as a leader are thought to have been on November 6 in NYC, those titles: 'Free Love', 'A Dissonance', 'A Swingin' with Mezz' and 'A Love, You're Not the One for Me'. Mezzrow was largely a sessions organizer in the thirties. He created his own record label, King Jazz Records, in 1945. Mezzrow published his autobiography, 'Really the Blue', in 1946. His broadcast, 'Blues from the Sky', from airplane on his way to the Nice Jazz Festival in February of 1948 was recorded, as well as a few bars of a tune upon his arrival to the Only Airport in Paris. After appearing at the festival in Nice Mezzrow made France his home. He continued recording as late as 1971 with the New Ragtime Band before dying in 1972 in New York City.

Mezz Mezzrow   1927


Mezz Mezzrow   1928

   I'm Sorry I Made You Cry

   I've Found A New Baby

   Makin' Friends

   That's a Serious Thing

   There'll Be Some Changes Made

Mezz Mezzrow   1929

   I'm Gonna Stomp Mr. Henry Lee

Mezz Mezzrow   1933


   Love, You're Not The One For Me

Mezz Mezzrow   1934

   Blues In Disguise

Mezz Mezzrow   1936

   The Panic Is On

Mezz Mezzrow   1937

   Hot Club Stomp

Mezz Mezzrow   1945

   House Party

      Soprano Sax: Sidney Bechet

   Gone Away Blues

   Minor Swoon

      Soprano Sax: Sidney Bechet

   Out of the Gallion

      Soprano Sax: Sidney Bechet

Mezz Mezzrow   1947

   Funky Butt

      Soprano Sax: Sidney Bechet

   Old Fashioned Love

     Soprano Sax: Sidney Bechet

Mezz Mezzrow   1951

   Clarinet Marmelade

      Trumpet: Lee Collins

   If I Could Be You

      Trumpet: Lee Collins

   Revolutionary Blues

      Trumpet: Lee Collins

Mezz Mezzrow   1964

   Royal Garden Blues


Birth of Jazz: Mezz Mezzrow

Mezz Mezzrow

Photo: William P. Gottlieb

Source: Vail Jazz

Birth of Jazz: Rube Bloom

Manny Klein

Source: NBJ

Born  in 1908 in New York City, swing trumpeter and bandleader Manny Klein is said to have begun his professional career with the Paul Whiteman Orchestra in 1928, also the year he first appeared on vinyl with the orchestra of Roger Wolfe Kahn: 'Let a Smile Be Your Umbrella' and 'Say Yes Today'. Klein remained with Kahn into early 1929, after which he made a career of contributing trumpet to countless orchestras. beginning with Fred Rich (with whom he laid a number of tracks in 1930), among the more important musicians with which Klein performed during his early career were Jimmy Dorsey, Tommy Dorsey, Benny Goodman and Frank Trumbauer. Klein's magic with a trumpet was in high demand as a studio musician for several decades, backing numerous vocalists from Bing Crosby and Lee Wiley in 1933 to actress, Mitzi Gaynor, in 1959. During the sixties he backed Dean Martin on numerous tracks. Klein died in Los Angeles in 1994.

Manny Klein   1928

   I Don't Care

      With the Bostonians

   Let a Smile Be Your Umbrella

      With Roger Wolfe Kahn

   Limehouse Blues

      With Red Nichols and His Five Pennies

   Say 'Yes' Today

      With Roger Wolfe Kahn

   Sweet Sue, Just You

      With the Wabash Dance Orchestra

Manny Klein   1929

   Back Home Again In Indiana

      With Red Nichols and His Five Pennies

   If I Had A Talking Picture Of You

      With Annette Hanshaw

Manny Klein   1930

   St. James Infirmary

      With Rube Bloom & His Bayou Boys

Manny Klein   1931


      With Annette Hanshaw

   There's No Depression In Love

      With Ben Selvin and His Orchestra

Manny Klein   1932

   Don't Tell A Soul (We're In Love)

      With Harold Van Emburgh & His Orchestra

Manny Klein   1936

   Every Once In A While

      With the Richard Himber Orchestra   Vocal: Stuart Allen

Manny Klein   1945

   Bei Mir Bist Du Schoen

Manny Klein   1946

   At Sundown



Birth of Jazz: Tal Henry

Tal Henry

Source: Last FM

Born in 1898 in Maysville, Georgia, violinist and band director Tal Henry joined the Frank Hood band in North Carolina in 1919, to become its leader in 1924. That band would become the North Carolinians Orchestra, though it recorded a couple unreleased tracks for Victor as Tal Henry's Southerners Dance Orchestra in 1924. That same year Henry published his first composition, 'Skirts', composed the year prior with Guy Funk. The North Carolinians Orchestra recorded that in 1926 with 'Slippery Elm', neither issued. It would appear that band's first releases were in 1928, recorded in April: 'My Song of Songs to You', 'Why Do You Make Me Lonesome?' and 'Some Little Someone', again for Victor. Henry toured the United States extensively with the North Carolinians until its disbanding in 1938. Henry moved on to become and agent and manager for various musicians, including Lionel Hampton and Nat King Cole. During World War II he became European Director of Music Theatre for the Army, visiting Europe in that capacity. Upon his return to the States he played hotels and with the North Carolina Symphony Orchestra until his retirement from the music industry in 1946. Henry died in 1967.

Tal Henry   1928

   Found My Gal

     Vocal: Harold Madsen

   My Song of Songs to You

     Vocal: Chester Shaw

     Henry's 1st recording issued

   Some Little Someone

     Vocal: Chester Shaw

     Henry's 3rd recording issued

   Why Do You Make Me Lonesome?

     Vocal: Chester Shaw

     Henry's 2nd recording issued

Tal Henry   1934

   Why Do You Make Me Lonesome?


   I Can't Go On Like This



Birth of Jazz: Jack Teagarden

Jack Teagarden

Source: Los Grandes del Jazz

Born in Vernon, Texas, in 1905, trombonist and vocalist, Jack Teagarden, began his music career in San Antonio by age fifteen, pianist Peck Kelly's among the first bands he joined. Teagarden toured with various bands and worked for radio until eventually making it to New York City in 1927 with the Kentucky Grasshoppers. Teagarden's earliest issued recordings are thought to have been with Johnny Johnson & his Statler Pennsylvanians on December 2, 1927, for Victor: 'My One and Only' and 'Thou Swell'. He contributed a couple of unissued tracks with Wingy Manone the same day: 'There'll Come a Time' and 'Toot Toot Toot'. Teagarden began 1928 with a session thought to be in January with Willard Robison, recording 'There Must Be a Silver Lining' and 'I Just Roll Along'. The next March he recorded 'She's a Great, Great Girl' and 'Give Me the Sinshine' with Roger Wolfe Kahn.    The next September found Teagarden recording three takes of 'Cherry' with the Dorsey brothers in a band called the Big Aces. That same day he recorded ''Round Evening' and 'Out of the Dawn' with a something different configuration called the Dorsey Brothers and Their Orchestra. The next month Teagarden laid the first several of numerous tracks with Ben Pollack, with whom he would wax time and again into the thirties and as late as the early fifties. 1928 was a big year for Pollack, during which he also laid his first tracks with Irving Mills, Eddie Condon and Jimmy McHugh. Teagarden moved to Paul Whiteman's big band in 1933, then joined Louis Armstrong's All Stars in 1937. His first recordings as a bandleader were on October 1, 1940 in NYC, to issue 'Son of the Sun', 'You're Simply Delish' and 'Just a Little Dance, Mam'selle'. Teagarden first toured Europe in 1948. Among the more important figures in early jazz, Teagarden recorded prolifically, some of the bigger names with which he is associated being Benny Goodman, Johnny Mercer, Bix Beiderbecke, Red Nichols, Jimmy McPartland, Mezz Mezzrow and Glenn Miller.. He died in 1964 of heart attack. Further below, Teagarden plays with his brother, Charlie, on trumpet in 'Wolverine Blues'. A couple of the later cuts below are live.

Jack Teagarden   1928

   My One and Only

     With Johnny Johnson & His Statler Pennsylvanians

      Thought to be Teagarden's 1st recording issued

   Thou Swell

     With Johnny Johnson & His Statler Pennsylvanians

      Thought to be Teagarden's 2nd recording issued

   That's A Serious Thing

      With Eddie Condon's Hot Shots

   Whoopee Stomp

     Irving Mills' Musical Clowns

      Also issued as The Lumberjacks

      Benny Goodman: Clarinet/p>

       Ben Pollack: Drums

Jack Teagarden   1929

   (Back Home In) Indiana

      With the Five Pennies

      Benny Goodman: Clarinet

      Red Nichols: Cornet

   It's Tight Like That

      With the Kentucky Grasshoppers

      Benny Goodman: Clarinet

      Ben Pollack: Drums

   Makin' Friends

       With the Kentucky Grasshoppers

      Benny Goodman: Clarinet

      Ben Pollack: Drums

Jack Teagarden   1930

   Deep Harlem Blues Hotsy

      With the Dixieland Jazz Orchestra


      Cornet: Red Nichols

Jack Teagarden   1931

   After You've Gone

      Guitar: Eddie Lang

      Violin: Joe Venuti

Jack Teagarden   1935

   Nobody's Sweetheart Now

      With Paul Whiteman

Jack Teagarden   1939

   Beale Street Blues

Jack Teagarden   1940

   If I Could Be With You

   Son of the Sun

      Teagarden's 1st recording issued as a bandleader

   You're Simply Delish

      Teagarden's 2nd recording issued as a bandleader

Jack Teagarden   1945

   Wolverine Blues

      Trumpet: Charlie Teagarden

Jack Teagarden   1947

   Body and Soul

      Vocal: Mildred Bailey

Jack Teagarden   1951

   That's a Plenty

Jack Teagarden   1954

   Mis'ry and the Blues

Jack Teagarden   1958

   Jeepers Creepers

      Trumpet: Louis Armstrong

   Rockin' Chair

      Trumpet: Louis Armstrong

Jack Teagarden   1959

   I Found a New Baby

      Trumpet: Henry Red Allen

   Star Dust

Jack Teagarden   1961

   Basin Street Blues


  Born in 1904 in Paris, Kentucky, trumpeter Bill Coleman's career spanned from early jazz well into modern. He first recorded in 1929 with Luis Russell. Though Henry Red Allen was Russell's main trumpet player Coleman plays solo on 'Feeling The Spirit', below. Coleman had played with several bands before traveling to New York in 1927 where he met Russell. Coleman also recorded with Cecil Scott & His Bright Boys in 1929 (unfound). During his first trip to Europe, with Lucky Millinder, in 1933 he met swing guitarist Django Reinhardt. Upon returning to the States he recorded with Benny Carter, then Fats Waller in 1935, after which he returned to Paris to record with Django Reinhardt the same year. In 1937 he traveled to Bombay, returned to Paris, then headed for Cairo, then back to the States in 1940. Coleman then played with a number of big names, too long to list, before returning to Paris permanently in 1948. (Like not a few black musicians, Coleman felt racism was less pronounced in Europe than in the States.) Coleman died in Toulouse in 1981.

Bill Coleman   1929

   Feelin' the Spirit

      With Luis Russell

Bill Coleman   1936

   Georgia On My Mind

   I'm In the Mood For Love

Bill Coleman   1937

   Big Boy Blues

      With Django Reinhardt


      With Django Reinhardt

   Swing Guitars

      With Django Reinhardt

Bill Coleman   1960


      Live performance

Bill Coleman   1967

   But Not For Me/For All We Know

      Album: 'Ben Webster Meets Bill Coleman'

Bill Coleman   1972

   I Want a Little Girl



Birth of Jazz: Bill Coleman

Bill Coleman

Source: Jazz Rhythm

Birth of Jazz: Spike Hughes

Spike Hughes

Source: Vintage Bandstand


By this time jazz had long since migrated across the Atlantic. Born Patrick Cairns Hughes in 1908, double bassist and trumpeter Spike Hughes first recorded on double bass in London in October 1929 with the New Mayfair Dance Orchestra, the first tune of that session being 'Tear Drops'. Hughes put his own band together in Great Britain in 1930, originally called the Decca Dents. and recorded the same year, 'A Miss Is As Good As a Mile' among his first issued. In May 1933 Hughes visited New York City and formed the Negro Orchestra consisting of such as Benny Carter, Luis Russell, Coleman Hawkins, Chu Berry, Henry Red Allen and Sid Catlett. Hughes composed or arranged most of the tunes that band recorded that month, taken back to England for issue only there. Hughes dropped away from music after those recordings, upon which he became a writer, BBC announcer and critic. He died in Great Britain in 1987.

Spike Hughes   1930

   A Miss Is As Good As a Mile

   It's Unanimous Now

   The Man From the South

   The Mooche



Born in 1908, trumpeter and vocalist Hot Lips Page (Oran Thaddeus Page), began his musical career as a teenager performing at circuses and minstrel shows. He woould soon back blues singers such as Ma Rainey, Bessie Smith and Ida Cox. Page first recorded in Dallas, TX, on October 24, 1929, seven tracks with Eddie and Sugar Lou's Hotel Tyler Orchestra, including two takes of 'Eddie and Sugar Lou Stomp'. The next month he blew trumpet on a couple tracks by Walter Page's Blue Devils: 'Blue Devil Blues' and 'Squabblin'. The next year Page found himself with Bennie Moten through 1932. He would perform for Chu Berry (with whom he began recording vocals in addition to trumpet), Barney Rapp and Teddy Wilson during the thirties before forming his own band in NYC at Small's Paradise in Harlem in 1937. His first issues as a leader (also at trumpet and vocals) were from a session held March 10, 1938: 'Good Old Bosom Bread', 'He's Pulling His Whiskers', 'Down on the Levee' and 'A Old Man Ben'. Page recorded prolifically both with his own bands and major names in jazz such as Billie Holiday, Chu Berry again in 1941, Artie Shaw (1941-42), Eddie Condon in '44 and '49, Mezz Mezzrow (1944-45) and bluesman, Lonnie Johnson, from '47 into '49. Page died in New York in 1954, only 46 years of age. More Hot Lips Page will be found in Big Band Jazz.

Hot Lips Page   1929

   Blue Devil Blues

      With Walter Page

   Eddie and Sugar Lou Stomp

     With Eddie and Sugar Lou's Tyler Hotel Orchestra

   K.W.K.H. Blues

     With Eddie and Sugar Lou's Tyler Hotel Orchestra

     Thought to be Page's 1st issued recording

Hot Lips Page   1930

   New Moten's Stomp

   Won't You Be My Baby

Hot Lips Page   1932

   Moten Swing

Hot Lips Page   1940



Birth of Jazz: Hot Lips Page

Hot Lips Page

Photo: William P. Gottlieb

Source: Wikipedia

  Born in Oakland in 1896, Anson Weeks was another "sweet" hotel dance band leader, largely in Oakland, Sacramento and San Francisco. It was 1927 that he began a seven-year engagement at the Mark Hopkins Hotel in San Francisco, his band thus called the Hotel Mark Hopkins Orchestra. Weeks first began recording for Columbia in 1928. He was forced to retire from performing in 1941 when an auto accident injured his arm. He then became an auto salesman and real estate agent until in 1956 when he began recording and touring again. Weeks died of emphysema in 1969.

Anson Weeks   1929

   Ploddin' Along


   Tear Drops/Now I'm In Love

Anson Weeks   1932

   Ro-Ro-Rollin' Along

   If I Could Call You Sweetheart

   Me Minus You

   Rain, Rain Go Away

   Was That The Human Thing To Do

   You're So an So

Anson Weeks   1933

   Thank Heaven for You

Anson Weeks   1937

   How Could You?


Birth of Jazz: Anson Weeks

Anson Weeks

Source: Swing Time

Birth of Jazz: Washboard Rhythm Boys

Washboard Rhythm Boys (Kings)

The Washboard Rhythm Kings were first formed in 1930 as the Washboard Rhythm Boys, which became the Alabama Washboard Stompers, which became the Washboard Rhythm Kings, which became the Georgia Washboard Stompers, the whole while calling themselves the Washboard Rhythm Boys every now and then. Personnel also continuously changed, some unidentified, others well-regarded musicians at the time: among the group's most notable early members were vocalist Steve Washington and guitarist Teddy Bunn. The group disbanded in 1937 due to uncertainty as to what its name was.

Washboard Rhythm Boys   1930

   Hummin' to Myself

Alabama Washboard Stompers   1931

   I Want a Little Girl

   Call of the Freaks

   I'm Gonna Play Down By The Ohio

   Many Happy Returns Of The Day

Washboard Rhythm Kings   1932

   Blue Drag

   It Don't Mean a Thing

   Tiger Rag

Washboard Rhythm Kings   1933


Georgia Washboard Stompers   1934

   Tiger Rag

   Who Stole the Lock


  Born in London, trombonist Geraldo Bright (originally Gerald Bright) ran away from home at age 16 (1920), boarded the HMS Cameronia as a member of its orchestra and sailed to New York City. Upon the return cruise he led a series of small bands until 1925 when he formed an orchestra taking residency at the Hotel Majestic in St. Anne's on the Sea for five years. After a brief tour of Latin America he formed the Gaucho Tango Orchestra, switching his name from Gerald to Geraldo as well. It was Bright's orchestra in which Ted Heath played trombone before starting his own band. After World War II Bright added booking cruise liners to his musical pursuits in an enterprise called Geraldo's Navy. Bright died in 1974 in Switzerland.

Geraldo Bright   1933

   The Carioca

      With the Gaucho Tango Orchestra

Geraldo Bright   1935

   On the Good Ship Lollipop

      With Shirley Temple

Geraldo Bright   1936

   Follow the Fleet

Geraldo Bright   1937

   September In The Rain

      With Cyril Grantham


Birth of Jazz: Geraldo Bright

Geraldo Walcan Bright

Source: Last FM


We currently bring this history of early jazz to a pause, at once returning to its origins. Though New Orleans trumpet player Bunk Johnson didn't record until 1942 he had played music with Buddy Bolden as a child before the turn of the century, before jass became jazz. Born in 1879, Johnson may have begun his career with the Superior Orchestra circa 1906-07 (about the time Bolden was hospitalized for dementia praecox). He later traveled while playing any venue that he might. On December 2 of 1924 he accompanied Sippie Wallace on 'I M So Glad I'm Brownskin' with American Records. That isn't thought to have been released, though it is included on the 1992 release of 'Prelude to the Revival Vol. II'. Johnson later joined the Black Eagle Band in 1931. But before he got very far he lost both his trumpet and front teeth during a fight at a dance hall. Which put Johnson's career to an end, until about 1940 a collection was taken to fit him with dentures, resulting in his next recording session on February 2, 1942 (quite some time since '24). Those aren't thought to have been issued until 'Prelude to the Revival Vol. II' in 1992. Johnson's first tracks to be released were from a session in New Orleans on June 11, 1942, tracks such as 'Yes Lord, I'm Crippled', 'Down By the Riverside' and 'Storyville Blues'. Johnson thereafter recorded prolifically to December 1947. Thereafter retiring, clarinetist, George Lewis, acquired leadership of his band. (Lewis, who also first recorded in 1942, with Johnson, will be found in Jazz 5.) Johnson died in 1949.

Bunk Johnson   1924

   I M So Glad I M Brownskin

      With Sippie Wallace

     Thought unissued

Bunk Johnson   1942


      Clarinet: George Lewis

Bunk Johnson   1944

   Careless Love Blues

   See See Rider

   Low Down Blues

   Slow Blues

Bunk Johnson   1945

   High Society

      Clarinet: George Lewis

   Lonesome Road

   Lord Let Me In the Lifeboat

   Maryland My Maryland

   Sister Kate


Birth of Jazz: Bunk Johnson

Bunk Johnson

Photo: William P. Gottlieb

Source: Know LA


We proceed no further than Bunk Johnson on this page, updating as occasions arise.




Early Blues 1: Guitar

Early Blues 2: Vocal - Other Instruments

Modern Blues 1: Guitar

Modern Blues 2: Vocal - Other Instruments

Modern Blues 3: Black Gospel Appendix


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Early Jazz 1: Ragtime - Bands - Horn

Early Jazz 2: Ragtime - Other Instrumentation

Early Jazz 3: Ragtime - Song - Hollywood

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Modern 5: Percussion - Other Orchestration

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