Lionel Hampton at Strand Theatre 1948

UPDATE (August 19, 2012): The handwriting on the Srand Theatre photograph is not by Otto Flückiger, but by Milt Buckner (see comments section).

When I was down at the archives last week looking for documents in relation to Don Redman’s 1946 tour, I accidentally found a batch of gorgeous photos of Lionel Hampton’s band in 1948 and 1949 at New York’s Strand Theatre as well as from  the Howard Theatre Washington 1948.

(click to enlarge)

The photograph above was taken at the Strand Theatre in N.Y.C, between January 23 and February 1948. Unfortunately the photographer is not known (to me at least). On the edge of the photo Milt Buckner himself noted down the names of the musicians to be seen. I photoshopped the edge just enough to make his handwriting (very pale pencil) readable again. Too make identification easier, I have cut up the photo into several parts below.

1. The Rhythm Section:

Milt Buckner (p), Charles Mingus (b), Billy Mackel (g), Charlie Harris (b),
Johnny Sparrow (ts), Lionel Hampton, Earl “Fox” Walker (dr).

2. The Trumpets:

Duke Garrette, Teddy Buckner, Walter Williams,
Wendell Culley

3. The Reeds:

Morris Lane (ts), Charlie Fowlkes (bar), Bobby Plater (as), Ben Kynard (as)

4. The Rest:

Leo “The Whistler” Sheppard (high note tp), Jimmy “Harpo”
Wormick (tb), Al Hayse (tb), Andrew Penn (tb), Sonny Craven (tb).

And here’s some music by (nearly) the same band a few months later. Coming from a broadcast made in Peoria, Illinois, August 4, 1948, here’s Lionel Hampton and his orchestra playing Body And Soul as arranged by Charles Mingus – with a solo by Mingus.

Lionel Hampton Orchestra: Body And Soul (1948)


8 Responses to “Lionel Hampton at Strand Theatre 1948”

  1. Thanks for posting Body & Soul–I’ve been looking all over to get a listen to that. Beautiful stuff despite the rough recording. It is a shame that there’s not a studio version from 1948, but I guess it’s one of the many recording ban casualties. Great photo of Hamp getting ready to rebop too!

  2. Thank you for sharing. My Grand Uncle is Wendell Culley and we have very few pictures of him. How might I get permission to use this photo?

  3. Thank you so much..I did receive and I am so very grateful. Your research is spectacular and I love your blog.

  4. Carole Hallam Says:

    Armin, the handwriting around that picture is my father Milt Buckner handwriting listing the musicians,

  5. […] announced in this posting, I am finally putting up the gorgeous photographs of Lionel Hampton and his orchestra at the Strand […]

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