[Dixielandjazz] THE BLUES

Jazzjerry at aol.com Jazzjerry at aol.com
Sun Sep 28 17:10:20 PDT 2003

In a message dated 28/9/03 16:59:51, jbeebe at centurytel.net writes:

<< the greatest blues singer

of all, Louis Armstrong >>

Poppycock!!! Armstrong was a jazz musician who could sing and play blues. 
There are a vast number of better blues musicians and singers than him. Lets 
start with the vaudeville singers such as the various 'Smiths', Bessie, Mamie, 
Trixie, etc. or even Elizabeth Johnson or Lucille Bogan.Then there are the 
country blues singers such as Washington Phillips, Mississippi John Hurt, Blind 
Willie McTell and many many others; even a few white singers such as Frank 
Hutchinson. What about Lonnie Johnson, Roosevelt Sykes, Big Bill Broonzy? In more 
recent times one can easily suggest people like Muddy Waters, Jimmy Witherspoon, 
Joe Williams, Jimmy Rushing, Dinah Washington, Etta Jones. (Ella NEVER sang 
the blues!)

I am not suggesting a reduction of the stature of Armstrong as a jazz 
musician and he and some other jazz musicians could (and can) play and sing the 
blues. Whilst 'the blues' is an integral part of SOME jazz it has a complete life 
of it's own as a separate musical genre and it would be quite correct, IMHO, to 
have a television series about the blues with little or no mention of 
Armstrong, Teagarden and other jazzers who performed blues tunes. Maybe no mention of 
W.C.Handy would be a much more serious error if only to point out the tunes 
he stole and published as 'commercial' blues. (Quick Example:- Atlanta Blues 
aka Make me a Pallet On The Floor)

Cheers, (And waiting for the flak!)


More information about the Dixielandjazz mailing list