Jazz Musicians of the Early Years, to 1945

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About the Book

The story of the first roughly half century of jazz is really the story of some of the greatest musicians of all time. Scott Joplin, Glenn Miller, Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, Billie Holiday, and Ella Fitzgerald all made tremendous contributions, influencing countless jazz musicians and singers. This work provides biographical sketches of the aforementioned artists and many others who made jazz so popular in the first half of the twentieth century. Biographies cover the pioneers of jazz in New Orleans in the late 1890s and early 1900s; the soloists who fueled the Jazz Age in the 1920s; the musicians and bandleaders of the big band and swing era of the late 1920s and early 1930s; and icons from the height of jazz’s popularity on through the end of the war. A discography is provided for each artist.

About the Author(s)

David Dicaire is the author of numerous works about music history. He lives in Leamington, Ontario, Canada.

Bibliographic Details

David Dicaire

Format: softcover (6 x 9)
Pages: 329
Bibliographic Info: discographies, tables, bibliography, index
Copyright Date: 2003
pISBN: 978-0-7864-1583-0
eISBN: 978-0-7864-8556-7
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Introduction      1

PART 1: THE NEW ORLEANS TRADITION      7
Buddy Bolden (1877–1931) The Cornet Pioneer      9
Nick LaRocca (1889–1961) The History Maker      13
Joe “King” Oliver (1885–1938) Dippermouth Blues      16
Kid Ory (1886–1973) Tailgate Trombone      20
Freddie Keppard (1890–1933) The Second in Line      25
Pops Foster (1892–1969) The Slap Rhythm Man      28
Jelly Roll Morton (1890–1941) Red Hot Pepper Jazz      33
Johnny Dodds (1892–1940) Weary Way Blues      38
Sidney Bechet (1897–1959) Coal Cart Blues      43
Zutty Singleton (1898–1975) A Monday Date      47
Baby Dodds (1898–1959) The Great Anchor      52

PART 2: THE JAZZ AGE      57
James P. Johnson (1894–1955) The Stride King      59
Jimmie Noone (1895–1944) Apex Blues      64
Ethel Waters (1896–1977) Jazzin’ Babies Blues      69
Fletcher Henderson (1897–1952) Smack’s Blues      73
Louis Armstrong (1901–1971) The Fountainhead      80
Eddie Lang (1902–1933) Hot Strings      87
Bix Beiderbecke (1903–1931) Singin’ the Blues      91
Earl Hines (1903–1983) Fatha’s Sound      97
Fats Waller (1904–1943) Honeysuckle Rose      104
Jack Teagarden (1905–1964) Prince of the Trombone      112

PART 3: THE BIG BAND AND SWING ERA: THE BANDLEADERS     119
Duke Ellington (1899–1974) Beyond Category      122
Walter Page (1900–1957) The Blue Devil      134
Jimmie Lunceford (1902–1947) Harlem Shout      138
Glenn Miller (1904–1944) In the Mood      143
Jimmy Dorsey (1904–1957) Blue Champagne Swing      150
Count Basie (1904–1984) The Catalyst      156
Tommy Dorsey (1905–1956) Clambake Seven      164
Benny Goodman (1909–1986) Swing’s the Thing      170
Chick Webb (1909–1939) I Got Rhythm      178
Artie Shaw (1910–) Blues in the Night      183

PART 4: THE BIG BAND AND SWING ERA: THE MUSICIANS      191
Coleman Hawkins (1904–1969) The Boss of the Tenor Saxophone      194
Johnny Hodges (1906–1970) The Earl of Ellingtonia      199
Benny Carter (1907–) Ridin’ in Rhythm      204
Ben Webster (1909–1973) Cottontail Blues      210
Lionel Hampton (1909–2002) The Jazz Ambassador      214
Gene Krupa (1909–1973) Drum Boogie      221
Lester Young (1909–1959) The Prez      226
Roy Eldridge (1911–1989) Little Jazz      233
Jo Jones (1911–1985) The Rhythm Maker      238
Teddy Wilson (1912–1986) Limehouse Blues      242
Jimmy Blanton (1918–1942) Mr. J.B.’s Blues      247
Charlie Christian (1916–1942) Solo Flights      251

PART FIVE. OTHER MAJOR FIGURES      257
Scott Joplin (1868–1917) Maple Leaf Rag      259
Eubie Blake (1883–1983) The Historian      264
Don Redman (1900–1964) The Arranger      269
Art Tatum (1909–1956) King of Jazz Piano      273
Django Reinhardt (1910–1953) The Gypsy Soul      278
Billie Holiday (1915–1959) The Voice of Jazz      283
Ella Fitzgerald (1917–1996) Scat ’n’ Things      291

Bibliography      299
Index      303

Book Reviews & Awards

“entertaining and well-written…very well done”—ARBA.