[Dixielandjazz] Re: Teddy Bunn
bhaesler at bigpond.net.au
Thu Dec 9 01:22:24 PST 2004
I wish I had enough time to tell you all about Teddy Bunn (born: Freeport,
Long Island in 1909 - died: California on 20 July 1978), one of the greatest
guitarists and innovators in the history of jazz.
The following brief summary by jazz writer Scott Yanow has been extracted
from the internet and is a good introduction.
If you can, find and listen to the recordings he made with the artists
mentioned. Many are available on CD.
A fine single-note acoustic guitar soloist, Teddy Bunn was one of the top
jazz guitarists of the 1930s. Largely self-taught, Bunn first gained
recognition when he recorded with Duke Ellington in 1929, and played with
the Washboard Rhythm Kings in the late-'20s/early-'30s period. A few years
later, he was one of the stars with the Spirits of Rhythm (which played
regularly at the Onyx Club). During 1938-1940, Bunn recorded with Jimmie
Noone, Johnny Dodds, Trixie Smith, J.C. Higginbotham, Sidney Bechet, Lionel
Hampton, and was on the famous Mezz Mezzrow-Tommy Ladnier sessions; in
addition, he made four unaccompanied solos for Blue Note. Switching to
electric guitar, Bunn led his own groups in the 1940s and re-joined the
Spirits of Rhythm; in the '50s, he played R&B with a variety of groups
(including Jack McVea, Edgar Hayes, and Louis Jordan). Although fairly
obscure after the early '40s, Bunn worked regularly until the late '60s,
when health problems forced his retirement.
Scott Yanow, All Music Guide.
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