[Dixielandjazz] Re: Jimmy Mazzy's Banjo

l.swain at comcast.net l.swain at comcast.net
Sun Mar 6 18:35:07 PST 2005

Kudos to my long-time friend Norm (who plays banjo and fiddle with 
a number of groups, including the Squirrel Hill Olde Tyme Jazz 
Band) for bringing friend Jimmy Mazzy's playing into the recent 
"banjo" thread.

A poll a few years ago by Jazzology and Mississippi Rag found Jimmy 
to be the No. 1 OKOM banjo player, and the No. 2 OKOM male 

You can listen to him, if you haven't yet (and I share Norm's 
astonishment that many listmates out there might not have) on cuts 
linked at http://www.elinewberger.com/music_listen.html, and others 
you can find from http://www.jimmymazzy.com (count the strings -- 
all four -- on his banjo in the picture on the home page).

Jimmy plays (and sings) like no one else I have ever heard, and 
I've been an OKOM addict (and minimally-accomplished OKOM piano-
player) for well over a half century. We spend as much time 
listening and talking to him and his wife Carrie (vocalist and 
manager), as possible, here in the greater-Boston area, and are 
hoping to follow them to the Jazz in the Olympics Festival in WA in 

Larry Swain

6 Mar 2005 at 12:00, anichols at gis.net (Norman Nichols) wrote:

> I realize that there is only one Jimmy Mazzy and I wonder why. 
The banjo in
> Jimmy's hands can't be anything but a front line instrument. 
Chord solo's are
> nice, and easier also, but Jimmy's blazing speed single note 
improvisations are
> to die for. Why aren't there more banjo players trying for a 
fraction of that
> technique. So when I read that, "If you wish to use the banjo as 
a front line
> instrument, then by all means use a five stringer picking single 
notes", I had
> to ask myself, You mean there are people out there that haven't 
heard or heard
> of Jimmy Mazzy!!

Laurence Swain
l.swain at comcast.net
617 (571) 7885

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