[Dixielandjazz] Cutty and others (was Vic Dickenson)

Jim Denham james at jiming.demon.co.uk
Sun May 11 03:44:06 PDT 2003

In message 
<3647344.1052502751973.JavaMail.nobody at waldorf.psp.pas.earthlink.net>, 
Burt Wilson <futurecon at earthlink.net> writes
>Speaking of shrines--I could build one for Cutty Cutshall. His ideas 
>were very unusual in my book and he had superb intonation. I love to 
>listen to him with the Condon gang. Did he record with anyone else? I 
>have no idea. Someone, please?
>Burt Wilson
>Silver Dollar Jazz Band
>-------Original Message-------
>From: JimDBB at aol.com
>Sent: 05/09/03 09:45 AM
>To: dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
>Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Vic Dickenson
>> In a message dated 5/8/2003 11:12:14 PM Central Standard Time,
>charliehooks at earthlink.net writes:
>>  Well--excuse me!  I had no intention of desecrating a shrine!  I had
>> listened to all those recordings, had never played with Vic before (nor
>> since), so that I--ignorant one--was forced to listen to what I actually
>> heard on the day I played with him.  On that day, whatever way, for
>> whatever
>> cause I've no idea and no curiosity--on that day, standing on my right
>> side where I could not mistake nor can I disremember what I heard: the
>> sounded like a garden hose with a semi-attached mouthpiece.
>>   I am willing to take all you guys' word for it: Vic Dickenson is/was
>> greatest trombone player who ever lived (I'll even forget Jack); but ON
>> PARTICULAR FUkkIN DAY he sounded like a guy with a garden hose and a
>> mouthpiece.  You guys weren't there.  I was.
>> so shut my mouf'
>> Charlie
>  Well, at least you own up to it.  You have desecrated a 'shrine.'
>  I can understand that one might not care for Vic Dickenson's sound or
>but his musicality cannot be denied.  For whatever it's worth, Charlie,
>Wally Cheske, a fine trumpet player in Milwaukee years back, made an
>observation similar to yours.  Wally said that Vic sounded like he was
>playing a rubber hose.
>  BTW, in the list of great artists that Vic has recorded with I forgot to
>mention Bobby Hackett.  Bobby had a five piece group with Vic and three
>rhythm that was outstanding.  Another fine group was the Saints and
>that had Vic, Norm Murphy, a wonderful Chicago trumpet player, pianist Red
>Richards, Barrett Deems and others.  Murphy and Vic together were superb.
> Charlie, be careful now of whose shrine you tip over.
> Jim Beebe
>Dixielandjazz mailing list
>Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com
><a target=_blank
>Dixielandjazz mailing list
>Dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com

-I agree with you about how good Cutty was. And, like you, I'm most familiar
with his work with Condon. But (as someone has already mentioned) he also
combined with Lou McGarity to give the BG Orchestra a truly amazing trombone
section (plus some outstanding work on BG small-group sessions in 1941,
including "Blues in the Night", where Cutty played trombone and Lou sang

Cutty also made some great records with Jimmy Dorsey's "Dorseyland" band, the
Lawson-Haggart band, Bob Crosby's later bands and Don Redman in the late 1940's
and 1950's.

As for Vic Dickenson: I'm so glad that Jim Beebe and others have defended this
great artist, and there is no need for me to join in. Maybe, like several other
'greats', he wasn't at his best towards the end, but he remains one of the
outstanding trombonists. One session that no-one's mentioned is the "Pee Wee
Russell Jazz Ensemble" of 1946, a 'Nicksieland'- type group with Muggsy Spanier
on cornet, Pee Wee (on very good form), and Vic. He fits in very well,
enlivening what might otherwise have been a rather run-of-the-mill session. Vic
was clearly an inspiration for host of later trombonists, from Al Grey to
Wycliffe Gordon.

Big Lou McGarity: a great trombonist who can be heard on a multitude of records
with Goodman, Spanier, Condon, Lee Castle, the WGJB...and (most recently
released: Arbors ARCD 19238)) a wonderful 'live' recording from April 1971 with
one of Eddie Condon's last bands. He was also on Charlie Parker's Verve "With
Strings" session of 1952.

Don't start me on Teagarden or Mole, please...


Jim Denham

Jim Denham

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