[Dixielandjazz] New Orleans Function

knittelsportland at juno.com knittelsportland at juno.com
Mon Nov 2 15:02:25 PST 2009

 dick at sleeman.nl wrote
> Dick Sleeman
> P.S. It might be interesting to hear from other listmates what 
> triggered them to become O.K.O.M. lovers :-)
I was born in 1935 and played piano accordion at age 8 switching to
trombone at age 10 because my Dad said "It was the easiest instrument to
learn" (little did he as a reed man know). I played in the grammar school
(grades K-8) marching band and orchestra joining a fledgling dance band
in 8th grade at age 13. We had "stock" arrangements which included Basin
Street Blues with parts written out Dixieland style and I remember
enjoying playing the written trombone part for that tune very much. When
in high school (grades 9-12), it broadened my experience, both musical
and otherwise and I was asked to join a more accomplished dance band
which exposed me the music of Miller, Goodman, Basie, Ellington, Herman,
Kenton and others. I lived in New Jersey with convenient transportation
to Manhattan and heard many of these bands live in places like Birdland
and Carnegie Hall during the years of 1951 to 1954. During those years, I
became a "modern jazz" fan but not much of a bebop fan. It was in  my mid
college experience that I joined and then led a Dixieland band primarily
because that style sold well at the fraternities and the money was good.
It didn't take very long for me to get hooked on Dixie because I found
myself playing from my soul and not from my brain. I have played and
loved OKOM ever since and still enjoy listening to well rehearsed big
bands and 1920's hot dance bands.

Rick Knittel
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