[Dixielandjazz] EXTRA-special treat: Russ Columbo's first film appearance, 1929 (10-minute video)

Steve Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Sat Jan 27 18:52:00 PST 2007

on 1/27/07 7:05 PM, Bill Haesler at bhaesler at bigpond.net.au wrote:

> Dear Steve,
> The YouTube link below (from Denis King and the Australian Dance Bands list)
> will take you to a great 1929 Vitaphone short of "Gus Arnheim and his
> Ambassadors". featuring Russ Columbo!
> Watch it all, for they finish with a spirited ³Tiger Rag².
> I call this music ŒHot Dance' a term coined, by my friend English
> discographer Brian Rust, in the 1970s.
> However, if you want to call it ŒCartoon Music¹, that¹s Okeh with me
> Just kidding.    8>)
> The hot trumpet player would be New Orleansian Ray Lopez. The slap-bass
> player, doubling tuba, is most certainly Ward Lay. (I recall a 1930s
> photograph of him playing with Eddie Condon. But where was it?)
> Kind regards,
> Bill. 
> http://youtube.com/watch?v=P6yAN7_5RhA

Dear Bill:

Thank you for the clip. As you know, that is not my favorite kind of music,
being a little to dated for me. They are good musicians, but seem to have a
little trouble swinging, especially in the solo and break portions.

I would not call it cartoon music because what Stallings and the studio
orchestra did is a lot better in my ears, but that may be the time line
difference  as Stallings was about a decade later.

As to its time line, I think Goldkette's version of Tiger Rag at Roseland
vs. Fletcher Henderson (1927?) must have been MUCH better, and what
Henderson was doing at the time was also far superior as I hear it.

Yes, Hot Dance works, but always leaves a sort of negative with me going
back to my days at Stuyvasent Casino and Central Plaza of the late 40s,
early 50's. We used to look at all those white kids dancing so stiffly to
some of the bands there and secretly call them "squares". We felt they
didn't "get" the music. (There's Hot Dance and then there's Hot Dance)

Silly, I know, but then we were young, immortal jazz musicians who thought
we knew it all and kind of looked down on the kids who just didn't know what
we, or jazz were all about. We were hip and they were not. Not too different
from today's jazz musicians, but they too will age gracefully. :-) VBG.

But then, when we went to the Savoy, man those kids got it, and danced a
hell of a lot better.

Re: Ward Lay and Eddie Condon, don't know where you saw a photo. I think
that both of them worked with Berrigan, and also with Teagarden, but don't
know if there are any photos. I never saw Ward Lay at Condon's joint, but
think he is on over 100 records so maybe you saw them on the cover of one?


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