[Dixielandjazz] Re: New Orleans 60+ years ago
futurecon at earthlink.net
Fri Jun 10 09:53:11 PDT 2005
And let's not forget Bugle Sam Dekemmal (?) There has always been
controvery about the spelling of his name. In the late 40's, I could get
WWL from New Orleans in Sacramento and on Sunday afternoon, which was early
evening in NO, I could get a program which had the likes of George Girard,
Papa Celestin, Bugle Sam, Sharky and others. I had an early Webcor which
made wax recrds off the air and I recorded many programs. Wish I had them
> [Original Message]
> From: Charles Suhor <csuhor at zebra.net>
> To: Patrick Cooke <amazingbass at cox.net>
> Cc: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> Date: 6/10/05 9:31:46 AM
> Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Re: New Orleans 60+ years ago
> Wow, you were in the thick of the revival, Pat. My brother Don and I
> were a bit younger than you, but I'm betting we crossed paths somewhere
> since we both did spot gigs all around town as teens, then Don went pro
> for the rest of his life. BTW, I'm doing a short sketch on how Catholic
> musicians often used to meet after Sat. night gigs at the 3 a.m.
> "fisherman's mass" at Star of the Sea church on St. Roch Ave. Does that
> ring a bell with you?
> On your other topic, it seems that amped basses are here to stay, and
> for me it's how they're played that counts--as with acoustic bass,
> played with an ear towards working as a unit with the rhythm section.
> And not too loud, dammit. The quality of the sound is important but if
> the rhythm is flowing, forget the preconceptions and have a great time
> with what's there.
> Charlie Suhor
> On Jun 10, 2005, at 9:07 AM, Patrick Cooke wrote:
> > Hi Charlie.........
> > Yes, I remember Sharkey in the Blue Room and Tony Almerico at the
> > Parisian Room, Papa Celestin at the Paddock lounge. At the time I was
> > one
> > of the 'young' players. It was around 1947 or 48, or maybe 1949. I
> > was
> > playing with Irving Fazola at the time, doing 3 nights a week at
> > Tony's on
> > Canal Blvd., plus 2 shows a day on WTPS, and a few off nights with Sid
> > Davilla at Leon Prima's 500 and a couple other spots. I played with
> > Pete
> > Fountain and George Girard when they were with the Basin St. Six.
> > Bunny
> > Franks had the mumps for about 2 weeks, and I subbed for him with the
> > group.
> > The tuba was used mainly because without amplifiers, the
> > string bass
> > could not be heard....also it was too cumbersome to march with. I
> > also used to play trombone, and am now trying to get my lip back,
> > though it was never that good to begin with. I hope I live long
> > enough to
> > get the lip back.
> > Well, I have given up plaing the acoustic standup bass, mainly
> > because it is just too cumbersome to deal with. Also it was designed
> > for
> > bowing, which I haven't done since I played shows in Miami Beach in the
> > early 60's. I now play the electric bass which was designed for
> > picking.
> > Now most purists go into cardiac arrest when they just see an electric
> > bass,
> > before they even hear a note. They saw one once before and they
> > didn't like
> > it, and they assume they all sound the same. Actually the kind of
> > strings
> > one uses has more of an effect on the sound than whether it has an
> > acoustic
> > chamber or not. My bass does not sound anything like the ones the rock
> > players use, but no matter....the 'elite' purists enjoy thinking they
> > know
> > something the rest of the world doesn't. They don't know jack. Their
> > 'preferences' are really prejudices. Their attitudes are beginning to
> > tarnish my love for the music.
> > I went to a festival in Calif last year. It was a mainstream
> > festival...no trad. There were none of the prejudices expressed or the
> > usual put downs I hear from the trad purists. It was refreshing.
> > Re Palm Court: Palm court has some fine players, and a few not so
> > fine ones that seem to continuously show up there. I was there a
> > couple of
> > weeks ago...Lars on piano, Jim Singleton on bass, Elie on Drums, Evan
> > Christopher on clar, Clyde Wilson on trumpet and I don't remember the
> > bone
> > player's name, but all the other players
> > were great.
> > Got to go....I'm spending too much time on this computer!
> > Pat Cooke
> > ----- Original Message ----- From: "Charles Suhor" <csuhor at zebra.net>
> > To: "Patrick Cooke" <amazingbass at cox.net>
> > Cc: <dixielandjazz at ml.islandnet.com>
> > Sent: Thursday, June 09, 2005 5:27 PM
> > Subject: Re: [Dixielandjazz] Re: Dixielandjazz Digest, Vol 30, Issue 19
> >> On Jun 9, 2005, at 3:38 PM, Patrick Cooke wrote:
> >>> Judy writes:
> >>>> Chris reckons that jazz in New Orleans has moved on
> >>>> since the days when Ken Colyer was there.
> >>> I have to admit I don't know who Ken Colyer is/was, but I was
> >>> living California and Florida for about 45 years, and just returned
> >>> to New Orleans 11 years ago. New Orleans has advanced to using PA
> >>> systems, and there are a few purists who even stay to listen when
> >>> there is more than one microphone in use. There are still a few
> >>> smug "elitists" who still would rather hear an out-of-tune acoustic
> >>> piano than an in-tune electronic one, even though the new keyboards
> >>> can sound like a concert grand. There are a few other silly notions
> >>> harbored by a few that make them feel they are above those of us who
> >>> live in a world of electric refrigerators, TV, computers, and
> >>> automatic transmissions.
> >>> But basically the music has survived and even advanced a little,
> >>> somewhat to the dismay of a few who feel that improvement is
> >>> impossible. Come to the French Quarter Festival.....It's mostly
> >>> local New Orleans musicians. They still play a lot of the old
> >>> chestnuts, but most of the musicianship is superb.
> >>> Pat Cooke
> >> English trumpeter Colyer was in N.O. in '52 or '53, just as the local
> >> popular revival of early & Dixieland jazz was starting to wind down.
> >> A noteworthy point about N.O. players "moving on" is that the
> >> international revival of the 40s and 50s took a very specialized form
> >> in the city. First generation black players were revived, some of
> >> them mainly to record on labels like American Music, a few (like Papa
> >> Celestin and George Lewis' bands) getting gigs and exposure. (Bunk
> >> rarely played in town.) Seasoned white players, mainly a little
> >> younger (Sharkey Bonano's and Tony Almerico's bands), did very well.
> >> The point is that the younger players didn't emulate Oliver or the
> >> Red Hot Peppers. Nothing resembling Lu Watters, Turk Murphy, or
> >> Claude Luter, or the Firehouse Five. Tubas and banjos were seen as
> >> old or corny, or even commercial, suggesting minstrelsy. The fluidity
> >> and invention they were seeking weren't as easily achieved, the
> >> youngsters felt, with the insistence of a strummed banjo and the
> >> enforced "2" feeling of a tuba. And marching and brass bands were
> >> years from getting the attention of young players.
> >> Most black and white kids were in fact attracted to modern jazz, many
> >> black youngsters to the new R&B as well. The was cultivated in the
> >> city by a good number of white youngsters who took up the Dixieland
> >> style and "moved on" with it--Fountain, the Assunto brothers, George
> >> Girard, Roy Liberto, Connie Jones, Murphy Campo, Al McCrossen, Pee
> >> Wee Spitelera, Paul Ferrara, and others. Exceptions existed, of
> >> course. Dr. John was a young white R&B comer. The Last Straws used a
> >> banjo but the band in its early incarnations wasn't taken seriously.
> >> Like many revivalist bands, they could "play hot," but they didn't
> >> swing.
> >> It was the largely the influx of young foreign musicians in the 60s
> >> that turned interest back to earliest jazz styles, instrumentation,
> >> and repertoire. Many of them hung out with Preservation Hall veterans
> >> after it opened in 1961. Lars Edergan, Barry Martyn, and others
> >> contributed greatly to this. (Tom Sancton was one of the few locals.)
> >> Danny Barker later worked to bring kids into marching bands, which
> >> also "moved" on, sometimes nicely, sometimes in R&B and other strange
> >> directions, and regressing at times to the glorification of arrested
> >> amateurism.
> >> The local jazz scene today is a very mixed bag, but updated
> >> Dixieland, though sometimes too facile, is often the most driving and
> >> interesting force. I don't get the N.O. that often, but typical bands
> >> I've heard at the Palm Court are a good example. Musicians integrate
> >> many styles into the ensembles and solos--listening to each other
> >> very well, often sounding very modern, all the while keeping the
> >> spirit of freewheeling Dixieland jazz. You can hear a lot of Clifford
> >> Brown in Leroy Jones' trumpet, Ray Brown in Bill Huntington's bass,
> >> etc. It's good, deep, feelingful jazz. Another way of saying that:
> >> it's to my taste!
> >> Charlie Suhor
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