Archive for 1949

Earliest Donald Byrd

Posted in 78 rpm, Donald Byrd, jazz with tags , , , , , , , , , on February 9, 2013 by crownpropeller

Yesterday the jazz world heard of the passing of trumpet legend Donald Byrd. But until now the only source for this sad news is Byrd’s nephew, confirmation from other relatives is still missing.

If  it’s true that Donald Byrd passed, he would have reached the age of 80. Not widely known – although mentioned in standard discographies – is the fact that Byrd started his career at a very early age. Byrd can first be heard on two 78rpm records by the tenor saxophonist Robert Barnes for Fortune Records, a company based in Detroit. Although some discographies note 1947 for these recordings (Byrd would have been 15 then), it was probably recorded in 1949. judging from the date on which one of the resulting records was mentioned in Billboard.

Of the four sides with “Sahib Byrd” apparently released I can offer you two here. Unfortunately the record this was dubbed from broke some dozen years ago and was glued. When played now it skips and jumps at several points, although  I really tried my very best to fix the problem (if someone has a better sound file, please let me know)

Although “Bobbin’ At Barbee’s” is designated as the b-side of Fortune 113, it’s the side with a solo by Byrd, so I put it in first place. Billboard (June 18, 1949) did not like it very much: “Just noise – hardly any music”, is all they had to say.

Robert-Barnes_Fortune_bobbin_at_barbies

At least Billboard had more words for the a-side, “Black Eyed Peas”,which features Barnes exclusively: “Good opening riff dissipates into another loud honking tenor sax solo of little quality or distinction.”

Continue reading

Lionel Hampton at the Strand Theatre 1949

Posted in Lionel Hampton, Photographs with tags , , , , on December 9, 2012 by crownpropeller

UPDATE (May 11, 2014): The photos turn out to have been taken by Duncan P. Schiedt.

 

As announced in this posting, I am finally putting up the gorgeous photographs of Lionel Hampton and his orchestra at the Strand Theatre New York in late April or early May 1949 (from the Otto Flückiger collection). I learned that these photographs are by Duncan P. Schiedt. Just the same I have put my blog’s name on them. This is not to claim copyright on them (which I naturally do not own), but to prevent them from appearing all over the net. if this turns out to be a problem I take the photos off at once.

And here’s some music to watch photographs by: Recorded on May 19, 1949 in N.Y.C. for Decca Records here is nearly the same band as on the photos playing “The Hucklebuck”. Vocals are by Betty Carter.

First up is a photo of the full band:

strandTheatre_49_hamp_and_full_band(click to enlarge) The Lionel Hampton Band at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C.,
late April or early May 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

Too see, who is who, you can open above photo in a new browser window and compare with the reference photograph below

strand_theatre_key.indd

1. Frances Gaddison, 2. Roy Johnson, 3. Billy Willams, 4. Johnny Sparrow,
5. Wes Montgomery, 6. Lionel Hampton, 7. Johnny Board, 8. Bobby Plater,
9. Earl “Fox” Walker, 10. Gene Morris, 11. Benny Bailey,
12. Wendell Cull(e)y 13. probably Walter Williams,
14. probably Leo “The Whistler” Shepherd,
15. Ben Kynard, 16. Jimmy “Harpo” Wormick, 17. Benny Powell,
18. Al Grey, 19. Lester Bass.

Photo number two brings us closer into the action:

strandTheatre_49_bass_fox_morris_powell(click to enlarge) Bass trumpeter Lester Bass, Earl “Fox” Walker and
Benny Powell at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C., late April or early May 1949.
Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt. From the Otto Flückiger collection.

A closer look into the reed section:

strandTheatre_49_plater_fox_morris

(click to enlarge) Bobby Plater, Earl “Fox” Walker and
Gene Morris at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C., late April or early May 1949.
Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.From the Otto Flückiger collection.

Johnny Sparrow was still there (he was soon to form his own band, Johnny Sparrow and his Bows and Arrows).

strandTheatre_49_sparrow (click to enlarge) Johnny Sparrow at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C., late April
or early May 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

The 1949 Hampton indeed band had a strong reed section. Here are some shots of tenor player Billy  Willams:

strandTheatre_49_williams(click to enlarge) Billy Williams at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C., late April or
early May 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
rom the Otto Flückiger collection.

strandTheatre_49_hamp_williams(click to enlarge) Lionel Hampton and Billy Williams at the Strand Theatre,
N.Y.C., late April or earlyMay 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

And here is Johnny Board:

strandTheatre_49_board

(click to enlarge) Johnny Board at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C.,
late April or early May 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

Charles Mingus had left the band already and so Roy Johnson was the sole bassist in this edition of Hampton’s orchestra:

strandTheatre_49_johnson_williams

(click to enlarge) Roy Johnson and Billy Williams at the Strand Theatre
N.Y.C., late April or early May 1949. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

Finally: Lots of horns (and a glimpse of Wes Montgomery):

strandTheatre_49_hamp_and_band

(click to enlarge) The Lionel Hampton Band at the Strand Theatre, N.Y.C.,
late April or early June 1948. Photo by Duncan P. Schiedt.
From the Otto Flückiger collection.

Enjoy!

Wendell Cull(e)y writes to Milt Buckner

Posted in documents, jazz, Lionel Hampton, Milt Buckner with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 19, 2012 by crownpropeller

Trumpet man Wendell Cull(e)y (1906–1983) played in Lionel Hampton’s orchestra from 1944 to 1949, a period in which Milt Buckner was Hampton’s pianist. Culley (as his name is mostly written) and Buckner seem to have kept in contact over the years. There is a letter in Otto Flückiger’s files about Milt Buckner that Culley wrote to Buckner in August 1971 (the letter arrived after a longer journey).

(click to enlarge)

I decided to present this very interesting letter in full, since I think it contains nothing of a too personal nature. In addition I have some very nice other documents to offer here that somehow have a connection to this letter.  But let’s start with a question first: Who is “your former vocalist named Jerald” (??)” on the first page? Although being quite knowledgeable about Buckner’s career, I have no idea.

Culley writes about Million Dollar Smile here. This gives us the opportunity to leave the letter for a while:

Since Wendell Culley writes about Eddie Jones buying the record, it’s clear that Culley is talking about the version Hamp recorded for Decca in October 1944:

Lionel Hampton: Million Dollar Smile (L3644 on Decca 18719, October 16, 1944)

But there were people who liked another version (also arranged by Buckner) much better (scroll a little down to hear that one). As Buckner remembered in a 1975 conversation with Otto Flückiger and Kees Bakker:

We got Dinah Washington out of Chicago where she was singing with a church group. Sometimes she was singing there in a club. Hamp heard her somewhere, and before I knew it, she was in the band. I made about all the arrangements for her in Hamp’s band, the first I made was My Bill. I always liked her voice. Gladys Hampton always tried to teach Dinah how to dress. You might remember Million Dollar Smile. I wrote that arrangement so that Dinah could sing it. We got into the Decca studio in Hollywood and we played the thing down and she sang beautifully. Hamp said: ‘Listen, Buck, there should be no singing on this arrangement!’.

This Million Dollar Smile was one of the best records Hamp ever made, because of the sound. The guy that wrote this tune is Porter Roberts. He wrote for a little newspaper in Toledo, Ohio and he is still living there [Buckner was talking in 1975]. Before I came over here, I talked to him on the phone.

I once made a deposition for Porter Roberts in Toledo in the 1950s against Lionel Hampton to describe the scene where Hapmton canceled the vocals. Well Dinah sat there and cried on that deposition and Roberts used it in a trial against Hampton. He was sure that the song was supposed to be a hit. He was sueing on the possibility that his song would have become a hit if Dinah would have sung on it.

An unsigned short article from Jet (dated July 8, 1954) also is related to unhappy feelings in connection with Million Dollar Smile:

Composer Sues Hampton For “Violating” Song Pact

Bandleader Lionel Hampton was sued in Toledo for failing to keep an agreement to record and publish a song titled Your Million-Dollar Smile (sic!). The action was filed by Porter Roberts, who contended he composed the tune and registered it for copyright, then gave half interest to Hampton. He claims Hampton promised to record and publish the song through his firm, Swing and Tempo Music Co., with profits to be equally shared.

I could not find out what the result of this legal hassles were (and I would like to know the publisher and composer credits on the original 78). But if you listen to the arrangement of Million Dollar Smile featuring Dinah Washington – recorded for the Jubilee series – you can in no way doubt its great potential for becoming a hit.

Lionel Hampton: Million Dollar Smile (Jubilee, recorded summer 1944)

There are not many sources on the internet that mention Porter Roberts, but it looks like Roberts was a very interesting person. In the thirties (exact date unknown) he had a column called “Praise And Criticism” in the Pittsburgh Courier, in the fourties this column probably appeared in the Chicago Defender.

Roberts probably had his home base in Detroit in 1945, because that is the place where he started “The Entertainer”, a magazine which was to supply “National Theatrical News Weekly”. In Otto Flückiger’s archives I found a copy of “The Entertainer’s” pilot issue. This is just a one-pager – on the flip there is just a list (how much advertising in future issues will cost).  Read the fierce editorial – also named “Praise And Criticism” here – Roberts is not holding anything back.

(click to enlarge and supersize)

The other texts on this page are more or less the usual PR announcements send out by the promoters. But note the blurb about Hampton, which means  a year after “Million Dollar Smile” was recorded there seem to no hard feelings between Hampton and Roberts. Have there ever been any regular issues of “The Entertainer”? I could not find out.

So back to the letter:


If Wendell Culley indeed writes about multiinstrumentalist Ben Kynard here, he was misinformed about this supposedly early death. Kynard, (pictured above in an undated, unsigned photograph) the alleged composer of famous tune “Red Top” passed on July 5th 2012, aged 92.  Kynard had played with Hampton from 1946–1953.



In the P.S. of his letter, Wendell Culley (as his name is mostly written – but note the signature!) mentions Milt Buckner’s “Fiesta” in Carnegîe Hall 1945. This most probably is “Fiesta de l’Amour” [sic!] a “semi-classical”  piece Buckner wrote in the mid-fourties. He had copyrighted it  on January 23, 1945 along with seven other compositions that apparently never were recorded.

The program for Hampton’s 1945 Carnegie Hall Concert on April 15th (front pictured above) unfortunately does not mention “Fiesta” among the compositions to be played:

As you see, Herb Quigley’s composition “Three Minutes With Three Notes” was to be the composition played with strings featured. The members of the string section are not known, since the program only mentions Eddie South:

So did Hampton change his mind and have the band with the string section play Buckner’s “Fiesta”? It will be hard to find the exact truth.

 Although no recording of “Fiesta” as played by the Lionel Hampton orchestra at the Carnegie Hall is extant, “Fiesta de l’Amor” can be heard on a very rare recording by Milt Buckner’s Orchestra from a “Band For Bonds” broadcast recorded two weeks after Buckner’s first session for MGM in March 1949. The broadcast (details in my Milt Buckner discography) was preserved on glass-based acetate records that were in Milt Buckner’s personal collection. It is not known what became of these glass records, but fortunately Kees Bakker or Otto Flückiger had the opportunity to dub them sometime in the 1970s.

Milt Buckner and his Orchestra: “Fiesta de l’Amour” (“Bands For Bonds” broadcast, recorded probably March 26, 1949)

This version has no strings but nice parts for Milt Buckner on vibraphone and unaccompanied Julius Watkins on french horn.

Enjoy!

Jo Jo Adams with Tom Archia – and in person

Posted in 78 rpm, clips, Jo Jo Adams, R'n'B, Tom Archia with tags , , , , , on March 9, 2012 by crownpropeller

Jo Jo Adams (circa 1918–February 27, 1988) was one of the most colorful persons on the R’n’B scene of post war Chicago. A short biography by Dave Penny can be found here. Adams recorded for small labels like Hy-Tone, Aristocrat, Parrot, he also worked as MC in different clubs in Chicago.

One of my favorite sessions by Jo Jo Adams is the one he did with almost forgotten Chicago tenor saxophonist Tom Archia in July 1947 (read more about Tom and this session on the Tom Archia page of the Red Saunders Research Foundation). Here’s Jo Jo singing “Drinking Blues” on a copy of Aristocrat 801:

Adams was mostly known for his flamboyant personality, his risqué songs and his colorful dresses – with long coat tails that he swung around while dancing. Here you get a chance to see Jo Jo in action as part of William Alexander’s 1949 movie “Burlesque in Harlem (sometimes dated as having been made in 1953 or 1954, but Alexander had moved to London in 1950). Unfortunately Adams is only accompagnied by a piano – and how I wish it would be Tom Archia’s Combo! And sound and video are slightly asynchroneous on my source.

But hey: Better Jo Jo Adams with a piano and asynchronous sound than no Jo Jo Adams at all!

Enjoy!

Coleman Hawkins and Roy Eldridge in Europe, 1949/1950

Posted in Coleman Hawkins, jazz, Roy Eldridge with tags , , , , , , , , on January 8, 2012 by crownpropeller

After the Don Redman concerts in autumn 1946 nothing much happened in Switzerland in regard to modern jazz directly from the USA. One of the most important events in this context was Coleman Hawkin’s tour through several european countries in late 1949 and early 1950, among them Switzerland, where Hawkins had spent some time during the 1930s.

It is not quite clear to me from when to when the tour lasted; according to John Chilton’s “The song of the Hawk”, Hawkins flew from New York to Paris on November 29. He shortly rehearsed his group  – James Moody on second ts, Nat Peck (tb), Hubert Fol (as), Jean-Paul Mengeon (p), Pierre Michelot (b) and Kenny Clarke (dr) – after that they played the Edouard VII Theatre in Paris. On November 30 they appeared in Bern, on December 1 they played in Zurich. On December 3 the Hawkins band played in Lausanne, this concert was released at sometime in the 1990s as TCB CD 02132.

Here’s the program for the swiss part of the concert that I found in the Otto Flückiger collection. As you see the front page was signed by Hawkins himself.

(click to enlarge)

(click to enlarge)

Although the Be Bop revolution had shaken the american jazz scene already four years earlier, a lot of european critics still did not know what to make of the “new” sounds that altogether were not so new all. Typical for the times is the following review of the Zurich concert– signed by one “-li” – which appeared in an unidentified newspaper (apparently the reviewer took Nat Peck as another french man).

Here is a translation of the above article:

Be Bop at the Kongress-Saal
About the jazz concert with Coleman Hawkins

That a Coleman Hawkins has subscribed to Be Bop is really surprising. It is a pity when you think of the good records this artist of the tenor saxophone has published – for example his famous Body And Soul!. This piece which was played in a crippled version on December 1 is a good indicator of this aberrance in jazz. This unmotivated music that does not consider harmonic and rhythmic laws was even tiring to jazz fanatics. The thousand listeners missing – who are always there when good authentic jazz is played (i.e. Sidney Bechet, Armstrong) and are able to fill the Kongress-Saal – proofed with ostentation that the audience in Zurich does not agree with this kind of jazz. Let us hope, that this silly fashion will not hold its ground for too long, as it would not be able to attract more people to jazz.

Ok, some of the participants were good musicians, especially the black ones. Drummer Kenny Clarke, who is not just anybody,  was brilliant during his solos, and received the most applause by far. This shows that the audience who was attuned to sensation was really satisfied only by him. Unfortunately he found a lot of fun in being louder than his colleagues, forgetting that it also applies to jazz that the drum set must not be the main instrument after all. From the start second tenor saxophonist unwillingly made some mistakes ["Canards" meaning "ducks" is a french slang word] which he repeated often during the concert. Obviously this does not matter in Be Bop – because Moody  apparently belongs to the greatest exponents of this style. Technically he was extraordinary, but he could not reach Hawkins in any way. The other four french musicians blended into the ensemble well, but it has to be said also: What is based on the instinctive naturalness of the negro often seems laughable with white people. The whole concert was tiring not the least because there were no soprano instruments in the group and the whole thing appeared monotonous – but that’s what Be Bop is. -li

Hawkins, the poor victim of a “silly fashion”? As you know – without me going into detail – nothing could have been further from the truth. It would have been better for “li” if he had just relaxed and enjoyed the pieces in Hawkins’ repertoire that might have better suited his tastes.

Here I am offering you a rendition of “Sophisticated Lady” as played by Coleman Hawkins, that you might not have heard before.

COLEMAN HAWKINS: SOPHISTICATED LADY


(Please excuse the digital noise, the source CD is slightly damaged)

It was recorded for broadcast around the time in question, although the exact provenance is unclear. I have this from a CD-R in the Otto Flückiger collection, the notes to which carry irritating data:

Track 13: Roy Eldridge/Rec. Zürich 1950/Sophisticated Lady

Track 14: Coleman Hawkins/Rec. München [Munich] 1949/Rockin Chair

As you see right away, something must be wrong here, as “Sophisticated Lady” is the Hawkins track, whereas “Rockin’ Chair” belonged to Roy Eldridge – it used to be Eldridge’s feature number when he was with Gene Krupa. But what about the dates and places?

The next date mentioned by Chilton for Hawkins’ tour is December 11, when the band played in London. Afterwards there was a jam session after which a writer from Melody Maker asked Hawkins what he thought about bop. His answer is quoted in Chilton’s The song of the Hawk: 

Bop? Man, I ain’t never heard of bop! What is this bop? I understand it as a name, the name of a street. Bop Villa and next to it you got Pop Villa. Do I like the sound of the word? Yes, it sounds all right. I don’t know any bop music. I only know one music – the music that’s played. There’s no such thing as bop music, but there is such a thing as progress. What you are talking about is probably a commercial phrase, huh? A phrase that has been used to make something sell.

On December 13 Hawk played in Brussels. On December 21 the band recorded seven tracks for Disques Vogue in Paris – where Hawkins also spent Christmas. According to Chilton, Hawk played in Germany  in January 1950 and – later in the month – with local musicians in Sweden. After that he returned to the USA.

So for the Hawkins track above, neither Munich 1949 can be right (as the band played Germany in January 1950) nor Zürich 1950 (as the band played Zürich on December 1 1949).

So what about the Roy Eldridge track? Have a listen:

ROY ELDRIDGE: ROCKIN`CHAIR


(Please excuse the digital noise, the source CD is slightly damaged)

I am not able to find out whether Eldridge was in Europe in 1949. Judging from his discographical entries he must have spent most of the year in the USA. But in 1950 Eldridge  was touring Europe with the Benny Goodman orchestra for six weeks. From May 10 to May 12 1950 they were playing at the Kongresshaus in Zürich. It seems that Rockin Chair was the Eldridge feature number for this tour, it was also played at Benny Goodman’s Lausanne concert on May 13 (released as TCB (Swi)02142). Unfortunately I do not own the Goodman TCB CD, so I can not compare the versions of “Rockin’ Chair”.

Of course another possibility is that the mix-up on the CD notes is complete chaos, and that the Hawkins track is from Zürich,  December 1, 1949, whereas the Eldridge track is from Munich, 1950.

So, can anyone identify the provenience of these two tracks? Does anyone know when (or if) Benny Goodman’s band played in Munich in 1950?

Any help is welcome.

Dick Davis Combo on Gateway: John Young sings!

Posted in 78 rpm, clips, John Young with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on December 26, 2011 by crownpropeller

When you think of the Chicago style of playing the tenor saxophone in the 1940s and 1950s  – strongly influenced by Lester Young – you will surely think of Gene Ammons. Others that come to the mind of those in the know are Tom Archia, Claude McLin and Von Freeman.

An almost forgotten figure from that school of  blowing way behind the beat is Dick Davis (April 15, 1917 – January 19, 1954) about whom you may learn a lot from the Miracle page of the Red Saunders Research Foundation.

Dick Davis at an unknown date.
From Galen Gart’s First Pressings

Before we reach the small sensation announced in the title of this post, I offer you a clip of the Dick Davis Combo playing “Memphis Train” from Miracle 109, recorded around January 1947. The personnel: Dick Davis: ts; Sonny Thompson: p, Eddie Calhoun: b; Jimmie Hoskins: dr. The voices to be heard on this special train are by the band members.

Richard “Dick” Davis was born in Jackson, Mississippi, his family moved to Chicago in 1924.  On graduating in 1938 – he was schooled by legendary Capt. Walter Dyett – Davis went to work as a professional musician. His first engagement with a  name band  was with Doc Wheeler’s Sunset Royals from 1938 on:

Doc Wheeler and his Sunset Royals in 1941: Joe Murphy: dr, Cat Anderson: tp, Jesse Brown: tp, Jimmy Harris: tp; Al Lucas: b, Dick Davis (ts), Cornelius Ringi: as, Bobbie Smith: as, Sam “The Man” Taylor: ts,
Nat Allen: tb, Doc Moran: tb. Originally published in New York
Amsterdam News, May 2, 1942. 
Taken from Franz Hoffmans Jazz Advertised

After World War II Davis was soon leading his own band , which was first billed as “Richard E. Davis & His Gold Coast Swingsters” or “Richard Davis & His Westcoast Swingsters”.

From the Chicago Defender, February 23, 1946.
Taken from Franz Hoffmann’s Jazz Advertised

From the Chicago Defender, July 13, 1946.
Taken from Franz Hoffmann’s Jazz Advertised

In summer 1946 Davis, with a combo that also featured fellow tenor saxophonists Eddie Chamblee and Tommy Jones, recorded a track called  Tenor-Mental Moods which was released on two different copies of Miracle 101 (One had Sorry We Said Goodbye as the flip, the other Blues In My HeartBenson Jump/Memphis Train from January 1947 then was the next record under Davis’ name.

In 1948, Davis’ group was the house band of  the New Savoy for a while:

From the Chicago Defender, March 6, 1948.
Taken from Franz Hoffmann’s Jazz Advertised

From the Chicago Defender, May 8, 1948.
Taken from Franz Hoffmann’s Jazz Advertised

In late spring or summer 1949 Davis recorded for Ivin Ballen’s Gotham label with a band consisting of himself, pianist John Young, who had started his career in Andy Kirk’s orchestra, Eddie Calhoun and Buddy Smith. The signing of Dick Davis was announced in Billboard, April 16, 1949. The session resulted in Gotham 182 (You Tell Me/Double Talk). Unfortunately I never heard this record (if you have a copy, please let me know!). All I could manage is to steal a screenshot from an ebay auction – notice Davis singing on this side:

The Dick Davis Combo on Gotham 182. Does anyone have a copy?

Up to now the two (and a half) Miracle Records and Gotham 182 were the only known records under Davis’ name. But two weeks ago I spotted a mysterious Dick Davis record on ebay that has not been documented in any of the standard blues, r’n’b and jazz discographies before – and I managed to acquire it. Wandering Blues/Down Home which might well have been originally recorded on the Gotham session was released on Carl Burkhardts Gateway Records apparently sometime in 1952. Up to now only two issues were known on the Gateway R’nB series: Gateway 5005 by Chuck Huguely with Johnny Smith’s Orchestra and Gateway 5002 by Chicago drummer Jump Jackson (if you have one of these two, again please let me know!).

So here is one side of the elusive Gateway 5001.

Apparently what makes this record a small sensation besides it’s rarity is, that it carries the only example of pianist John Young singing – which apparently he did not like to do, as he told ted Panken in this double interview (with Von Freeman):

John Young: The Quality Lounge was on 43rd Street. So if you know anything about 43rd Street, you know it wasn’t on the uppity-uppity-uppity-up. The Quality Lounge, I was in there with a fellow named Dick Davis who played tenor saxophone. I was the piano player, the drummer’s name was Buddy Smith, Eddie Calhoun was on bass. And I was singing.

Ted Panken: Singing, too.

John Young: But at that time I had laryngitis. When (?) asked me to sing, I suddenly developed a case of laryngitis. All three of them called it “lyingitis” — because it was a gitis that never left. But the Q was cool . . . Like I say, it was a relaxed joint. You could come in there with tennis shoes on if you wanted to. It wasn’t nothin’ uppity, you know. And it was on 43rd Street. We had a good time in there for a number of years …

From September 1951 on until his passing from lobar pneumonia in January 1954 Davis played with King Kolax’ band, accompanying Joe Williams, Johnny Sellers, Danny Overbea, the Flamingos and other Chicago singers for labels like Checker and Chance (look at the Red Saunders Research Foundation about Kolax for more information about Davis’ doings in Kolax’ band.

Some of these days I will maybe put the flipside of Gateway 5001 up on this blog well – Down Home is a slow instrumental blues featuring solos by Davis and Young as well as Calhouns prominent bass work. Until then!

Willie “The Lion” Smith (and Bill Coleman)

Posted in documents, jazz with tags , , , , , , , , , , on November 5, 2011 by crownpropeller

While looking into some boxes in the Otto Flückiger collection that I had not opened before, i stumbled over a very nice program for a concert by Willie “The Lion” Smith, in Zürich, Switzerland, 1949. Let’s start with page 1:

(click to enlarge)

The concert took place on December 15, 1949 at the smaller of the two halls of Zurichs Tonhalle building. Now on page two we get to know the other musicians as well as their previous occupations: Continue reading

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