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Article

Howard Rye

[Charles Wesley]

(bCincinnati, May 29, 1890; dLos Angeles, Feb 4, 1970). Americanpianist. The year of his birth had been estimated as 1904, but the combination of a birthplace of Cincinnati (given by zur Heide, 1977) and the middle initial W. (in a musicians’ union report of 1932) suggests that he is almost certainly the Charles Wesley Alexander whose social security application gives 29 May 1890. He studied music and played in theater orchestras in Cincinnati. After moving to Chicago he was house pianist at Kelly’s Stables at least from 1924 to 1928. He worked there with Johnny and Baby Dodds and Freddie Keppard, among others, and in 1927–8 made a number of recordings under Johnny Dodds’s leadership, including Blue Piano Stomp (1928, Vic. 21554). In spring 1931 he joined Louis Armstrong’s big band, with which he may be seen and heard in the short films ...

Article

Marcel Joly

(bNew Orleans, 1877; dNew Orleans, Jan 11, 1952). Americancornetist, father of Henry “Red” Allen. For more than 40 years he was the leader of the Allen Brass Band in New Orleans.

R. Goffin: La Nouvelle-Orléans: capitale du jazz (New York, 1946), 59J. L. Anderson...

Article

Rainer E. Lotz

(b São Paulo, 1892; d Rio de Janeiro, 1979). Brazilian bandleader, violinist, and saxophonist. He studied music in Rio de Janeiro (1917–19) and directed his own dance orchestra, gradually changing its repertory from Latin American music to jazz. He recorded prolifically on the Odeon label (1919–24) and although he did not perform as a soloist he became one of the pioneers of jazz in Brazil. While touring Europe (1924–34) he played for a time with the dancer and bandleader Grégor Kélékian. He made several recordings for Grammophon in Berlin (including Everything is hotsy totsy now, 20338, and Big Bad Bill, 20340, both 1926), some of which show to advantage the hot trumpet playing of Mickey Diamond and the blue blowing on kazoo of Sydney Sterling. (R. E. Lotz: “Eduardo Andreozzi: the Jazz Pioneer from Brazil,” Sv, no.122 (1985–6), 62 [incl. discography])...

Article

Alan Barrell

(Joseph) [Joe]

(b New Orleans, Nov 15, 1885; d Hollywood, CA, Nov 20, 1956). American clarinetist and saxophonist, brother of George Baquet. He worked in New Orleans with Papa Jack Laine’s first Reliance Brass Band, then in 1915 went to New York, where he played with Jimmy Durante’s Original New Orleans Jazz Band. This group later made some recordings, including ...

Article

Alan Barrell

(b New Orleans, 1883; d New Orleans, Jan 14, 1949). Clarinetist, brother of Achille Baquet. At the age of 14 he played E♭ clarinet in the Lyre Club Symphony Orchestra, an amateur group conducted by his father, Théogène V. Baquet (b New Orleans, c1858; d New Orleans, c1920), a clarinetist who led the Excelsior Brass Band from 1880 until 1904. Later he was a member of the first Onward Brass Band (1900) and Manuel Perez’s Imperial Orchestra (1901–2), and he is believed to have worked with Buddy Bolden and the trombonist Frankie Dusen. From 1902 to 1904 he toured with P. T. Wright’s Georgia Minstrels, after which he returned to New Orleans and performed with John Robichaux, the Magnolia Orchestra, and the Olympia Orchestra. With Freddie Keppard, Baquet went to Los Angeles in 1914 to play with the Original Creole Band...

Article

Marcel Joly

[Milé ]

(b New Orleans, Feb 18, 1892; d New Orleans, March 2, 1970). American clarinetist, brother of Polo Barnes. He was taught by Lorenzo Tio, Jr., Alphonse Picou, George Baquet, and Big Eye Nelson, and first worked with Buddy Petit. In 1919 he began an association with Chris Kelly that lasted throughout the 1920s. Barnes then joined Wooden Joe Nicholas’s Camellia Band, but during the Depression years returned to his trade as a mattress maker. He played with Kid Howard during the late 1940s and from 1951 made a number of recordings as a leader, including an album (untitled) for the American Music label (1951, 641), and another as co-leader with Peter Bocage, Barnes-Bocage Big Five (1954, Nola 9). He also recorded with Kid Thomas Valentine (1951, 1960) and Ken Colyer (1953). His style was exciting, rough, bluesy, and full of feeling.

Oral history material in ...

Article

Rainer E. Lotz

[William ]

(b USA, c1890; d ? USA, after 1933). American alto and tenor saxophonist, clarinetist, and singer. His first known engagements were in China (1920) and Australia. After moving to England in 1925 he played in Bert Ralton’s Savoy Havana Band and recorded with Bert Firman (...

Article

Mike Hazeldine

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(Edwin )

(b New Orleans, July 31, 1887; d New Orleans, Dec 3, 1967). American cornetist and violinist. In about 1900 he began to study guitar and violin, and he first played violin in Tom Albert’s band (1904), the Eagle Band (c1905–6), the Superior Orchestra (c1909–1914), and Gilbert “Bab” Frank’s Peerless Orchestra; he also worked in dance halls in Storyville with Papa Celestin (1910–13) and King Oliver (1915). From 1910 he played with the Onward, Tuxedo, and Excelsior brass bands and the band led by Henry Allen, Sr., and from 1920 he was leader of the Excelsior. Some of his work with these brass bands was on baritone horn, and by his own account (his interview at Tulane University) he began to play trumpet in 1918; Knowles (1996), however, asserts that he played violin or baritone horn in these groups and took up trumpet around ...

Article

Rainer E. Lotz

(b Berlin, Feb 7, 1886; d Amsterdam, July 30, 1934). German bandleader, alto saxophonist, and clarinetist. He played first clarinet with the Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra before World War I. After hearing jazz in the USA in 1918–19, he organized a band modeled on the Louisiana Five. He accompanied silent films and also appeared as a jazz bandleader in two films (...

Article

[Theodore ]

(b New Orleans, Jan 13, 1890; d Detroit, Sept 15, 1965). American double bass player, brother of Tom Brown. He played tuba, then double bass, in his brother’s band and in May 1915 moved with it to Chicago. There, after a period away from music, he joined the New Orleans Rhythm Kings, with whom he recorded in 1922. With Murphy Steinberg he performed and recorded with the Original Memphis Melody Boys and Elmer Schoebel’s Midway Dance Orchestra (also known as the Midway Garden Orchestra) in 1923. From 1924 to 1927 he was a member of Jean Goldkette’s orchestra, which in 1928 he rejoined for a recording session; That’s just my way of forgetting you (Vic. 21590) provides a fine example of Brown’s ability to drive the playing of a big band. He also worked in Paul Whiteman’s band (31 October 1927 – February 1928), where his contributions (on the rare occasions when circumstances permitted) were entirely responsible for the element of jazz feeling that may be heard in Whiteman’s rhythm section of that period. Brown spent a further interval with Goldkette and played for one season in Kansas City before settling in Detroit, where in the 1930s and 1940s he worked as a freelance player and bandleader. In ...

Article

Karl Koenig

[ Thomas Philip; Red]

(b New Orleans, June 3, 1888; d New Orleans, March 25, 1958). American trombonist, brother of Steve Brown. He first played violin, then took up trombone. After playing in Papa Jack Laine’s Reliance Band he worked as a leader (from c1910). Beginning in May 1915 his group held an engagement in Chicago as Brown’s Band from Dixieland (or Brown’s Original Dixieland Jazz Band) and was said to be one of the first ensembles to play New Orleans jazz in the city. Later that year Brown formed a vaudeville group, the Five Rubes, in New York, but it disbanded after a short time and he returned to Chicago; he again led his own groups and made recordings as a freelance in Chicago and New York. He worked with the bandleader Ray Miller in Chicago (c1922–3) and then moved back to New Orleans, where he performed and recorded with the cornetist Johnny Bayersdorffer (...

Article

Bob Zieff

revised by Howard Rye and Barry Kernfeld

[Thomas ]

(b Hahnville, LA, 1891; d Elsinore, CA, Sept 3, 1948). Trumpeter. He first played drums, then guitar and alto horn, and changed to cornet about 1912. His early work was with brass bands in the New Orleans area (1913–17). In 1914 he joined Kid Ory, then in 1917 he toured on the vaudeville circuit and played in Chicago; he returned to New Orleans in 1918. The following year he went to California to work with Ory, and he took over leadership of the group when Ory left (1925); among his sidemen were Minor Hall and Les Hite. Later in the decade Carey’s big band, the Jeffersonians, appeared in the silent films Legion of the Condemned and The Road to Ruin (both 1928). From around 1929 to 1933 Carey was again a member of Ory’s band, but he then became a Pullman porter for lack of work in music during the Depression. He joined Ory’s band yet again in ...

Article

Howard Rye

(b Cambridge, MD, 1890; d New York, 1955). Tuba player. He began playing cornet in a local band, but later changed to tuba. Around 1925 he moved to New York, where he worked with Wilbur De Paris and Charlie Johnson (1926–30). He also recorded with Clarence Williams’s orchestra (1926–30), during which period the band accompanied several singers, among them Bessie Smith (1929). In 1930 he played with Cozy Cole’s Hot Cinders and in the mid-1930s he made further recordings with Williams (to 1937). Thereafter he ceased working for some time, but in 1947 he took part in Rudi Blesh’s radio series “This is Jazz” (also playing double bass) and recorded with Tony Parenti’s Ragtimers. St. Clair, who was capable of executing nimble bass lines on the tuba, is thought to have been the first jazz musician to play melodic solos on the instrument....

Article

Mike Hazeldine

(b New Orleans, Dec 25, 1878; d New Orleans, Oct 17, 1927). American drummer, father of Louis Cottrell, Jr. He played with John Robichaux’s orchestra (until 1909) and the Olympia Orchestra (1900–15) and worked in Chicago with Manuel Perez (1916–18). After his return to New Orleans he performed until his death, and also recorded, with A. J. Piron’s orchestra. Cottrell is credited with introducing the press roll into jazz drumming; he influenced two generations of drummers in New Orleans, including Baby Dodds, Cié Frazier, and Alfred Williams....

Article

Lawrence Koch

[Charles Cyril ]

(b Ironton, MO, Dec 30, 1890; d Chicago, Oct 23, 1951). American trumpeter, bandleader, saxophonist, and accordionist. He spent his teens playing trumpet in circus and theater bands, and returned to the St. Louis area about 1919. He then led groups on the Streckfus fleet of riverboats, which traveled to and from New Orleans, and soon became so popular that he had several bands working under his name. He and Fate Marable were leaders of a group on the SS Capitol during 1927, but Creath’s career was interrupted by a two-year illness. Thereafter he played mostly alto saxophone and accordion. Marable and he collaborated again during the mid-1930s, after which Creath opened a nightclub in Chicago. He suffered ill-health during his last years. Although he was praised by his contemporaries for the rhythmic swing and brilliant tone of his trumpet playing, Creath is best remembered as a highly influential leader in St. Louis music circles. Among the members of his bands were Ed Allen, Pops Foster, Lonnie Johnson, and his brother-in-law Zutty Singleton....

Article

Alden Ashforth

(L., Sr. )

(b New Orleans, Sept 11, 1893, d Pacoima, CA, Dec 2, 1959). American trumpeter and bandleader. He had cornet lessons with Manuel Perez for seven years from 1907 and was working in Perez’s Onward Brass Band by 1914. After playing into early 1920s with the Silver Bell Band (led by the trombonist Leonard Bechet), the Excelsior Brass Band, the Maple Leaf Orchestra, and the Tuxedo Brass Band, from about 1921 to 1925 he worked with Ed Allen and Fate Marable on the riverboat Capitol; he performs a stop-time solo on Marable’s recording of Frankie and Johnnie (1924, OK 40113). In the late 1920s he led the Southern Syncopaters on the SS Island Queen, and in the 1930s he directed the Sidney Desvigne Orchestra aboard the SS Capitol; he also led a big band that played for dances in New Orleans. Desvigne was not a hot jazz musician and his bands played almost entirely from arrangements. However, he allowed for the occasional hot solo, especially when performing for African-American audiences, by engaging such players as the trumpeter Eugene Ware, the clarinetist Theodore Purnell, Emanuel Sayles, and Louis Nelson. His riverboat career extended to the end of ...

Article

Rainer E. Lotz

(Winston )

(b Philadelphia, May 14, 1889; d New York, May 19, 1939). American dancer, choreographer, and impresario. He went to Ireland in 1903 as a member of a juvenile “piccaninny” group, then toured Europe with Belle Davis (1903–8); his dancing during this period may be seen in the film Die schöne Davis mit ihren drei Negern (1906). Thereafter he worked as an eccentric solo act, and from 1910 into the 1930s was featured as a step dancer in revues in London, Paris, and Berlin; he also toured South America in 1923. In 1925 he starred in La revue nègre, with music provided by Claude Hopkins’s Charleston Jazz Band. He then organized his own revue, Black People (1926), which toured Europe and North Africa with members of Sam Wooding’s band. He organized further revues in Berlin (1926) and New York (1927...

Article

Michael Tovey and Barry Kernfeld

(b Laplace, LA, April 30, 1887; d Lafayette, LA, 1960). American clarinetist and bandleader. His father was a violinist and bandleader, and he first played guitar and clarinet in a band formed by his three elder brothers. In 1913 he joined a local ensemble led by Kid Ory with which he traveled to New Orleans, where he took lessons from Lorenzo Tio, Jr., and George Baquet. Later he led his own band at various clubs before moving in April 1917 to Chicago. Duhé led the band that played nightly at the Dreamland Café. Early in 1918 it consisted of King Oliver, Roy Palmer, Sidney Bechet, the saxophonist J. Pollard, Lil Hardin (the future Lil Armstrong), Wellman Braud, and Minor Hall; Honore Dutrey and Willie Humphrey (rather than Palmer and Bechet) were present for its appearance as the White Sox Booster Band at the infamous “Black Sox” baseball world series of ...

Article

Richard M. Sudhalter

[Edwin Branford; Daddy]

(b New Orleans, May 22, 1891; d New York, April 9, 1963). American trombonist. He played violin from the age of ten, took up trombone five years later, and played with Papa Jack Laine’s Reliance Brass Band in his late teens; he also played semi-professional baseball. In March 1916 he went to Chicago in a quintet led by Johnny Stein; following a series of quarrels and resulting personnel changes, this group evolved into the Original Dixieland Jazz [Jass] Band, which found fame in New York. Although the authorship of many of the group’s numbers is in dispute, Edwards’s name appears as co-composer of Fidgety Feet, At the Jazz Band Ball, and Ostrich Walk, among others. Army service (from mid-1918) prevented him from joining the band for its 1919 tour of Britain; he was discharged a month after they sailed. He spent a brief period with the pianist and comedian Jimmy Durante, then rejoined the Original Dixieland Jazz Band and remained until ...

Article

Erik Wiedemann

(Sophus Gerlach )

(b Kolding, Denmark, Aug 23, 1892; d Copenhagen, July 14, 1965). Danish saxo-phonist and bandleader. He began his career as a banjoist and in 1923 became the first Danish jazz saxophonist, playing initially C-melody then alto saxophone. The same year he formed the first notable Danish jazz band, which during the 1920s included leading Danish jazz musicians such as Kai Ewans and Peter Rasmussen among its members; it made the earliest jazz recordings in Denmark (notably ...