[Dixielandjazz] In search of a non-tragic jazz hero

Marek Boym marekboym at gmail.com
Tue Dec 9 14:51:55 PST 2014

Hello Gary,
You are Her Majesty's loyal subject.
How about telling them of my Liege, His late Majesty the King of Swing?
Regards feom the sunny (even in winter) Israel,

On 9 December 2014 at 20:35, Gary Lawrence Murphy <garym at teledyn.com> wrote:

> Greetings Jazz Friends -- I have a favour to ask: I am in search of another
> jazz hero's story to tell, and having trouble finding an appropriate
> subject.
> for the past two years we have mounted a traveling road show to bring jazz
> music to elementary school children across our region; we are playing to an
> audience of children aged 5 to 12 typically, and the first year was easy,
> we did an overview of jazz history from ragtime to swing in an hour, it was
> a little scattered and eclectic but was well received and we were asked
> back and invited to even more schools.
> Last spring I wrote a carefully researched biographical show on the life of
> Louis Armstrong, who is the perfect figure to bring to a rural gradeschool
> audience, he'd personable, rags to riches the nicest possible way, he had
> even played here in Owen Sound in the 50's so we had a local connection,
> and the show was greatly loved, we were even approached for autographs by
> the kids!
> But now ... how do I follow an act like that? It is very hard to find a
> subject that doesn't end tragically or involve the sorts of occupations and
> activities that may not be, shall we say, age appropriate (had to skirt a
> few details in the story of Louis too, but it was relatively easy to do
> than it might be for, say, Bix or Jelly Roll Morton)
> I have a constraint too of the skill level of some of my band kids; my own
> kids could do anything I threw at them, but they like to include their
> school friends in the band, which I think is a Good Thing, so I'm limited
> as to instrumentation and skill level; we pretty much need to tell the
> story with two or three horns + rhythm section.
> I'd thought of Bix, he started as a kid, came from a nowhere's-ville and
> rose to great fame and influence, but the end of the story poses the
> technical problem of carrying off Rhapsody in Blue ... and then the cause
> of death.
> Another candidate I'm pondering is Kid Ory, also started as a kid and his
> career takes us from Bolden to the mid-century dixieland revival, but I
> really don't know that much about him yet other than the story of his
> sister nix'ing him joining Bolden's band at the age of 8 (was that even
> true?) I have only one biography on him that I haven't read yet.
> and then there's the ODJB although 100 years later they are still a bit hot
> in controversy and which ever way I went I could alienate half my friends
> ;)
> Any other potential subjects?
> --
> *Teledyn Addendum: teledyn blogspot ca*
> *eso: **EighthStreetOrchestra blogspot ca*
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