In Search of Buddy Bolden

First Man of Jazz

In Search of Buddy Bolden

The beginnings of jazz and the story of Charles “Buddy” Bolden (1877–1931) are inextricably intertwined. Just after the turn of the century, New Orleanians could often hear Bolden’s powerful horn from the city’s parks and through dance hall windows. Despite his lack of formal training, his unique style—both musical and personal—made him the first “king” of New Orleans jazz and the inspiration for such later jazz greats as King Oliver, Kid Ory, and Louis Armstrong. For years the legend of Buddy Bolden was overshadowed by myths about his music, his reckless lifestyle, and his mental instability. In Search of Buddy Bolden overlays the myths with the substance of reality. Interviews with those who knew Bolden and an extensive array of primary sources enliven and inform Donald M. Marquis’s absorbing portrait of the brief but brilliant career of the first man of jazz. This paperback edition includes a new preface and appendix relating events and discoveries that have occurred since the book’s original publication in 1978.

The Loudest Trumpet

Buddy Bolden and the Early History of Jazz

The Loudest Trumpet

This is the story of Buddy Bolden, inventor of jazz, who was celebrated as king in New Orleans at the beginning of the 20th century. It tells of his life, his career, and of the effect he had on the music of our time. From eyewitness accounts, published information, and early photographs, The Loudest Trumpet describes how he played the cornet and how his band introduced a new syncopated sound to popular music. It also explains how he influenced the music of his contemporaries in the city and how his raggy, blues-based New Orleans style developed into the music of the Jazz Era—the twenties.

Buddy Bolden and the Last Days of Storyville

Buddy Bolden and the Last Days of Storyville

The first volume of Barker's memoirs, A Life in Jazz, followed him from New Orleans into the big bands of Cab Calloway and Benny Carter. He was working on this-the second volume-for some years before his death in 1994. Beginning with an extended portrait of Buddy Bolden as recalled by the likes of Jelly Roll Morton and Bunk Johnson as well as Barker himself, this book draws together a lifetime of stories and the vivid characters who populated "Storyville."Danny Barker (1909-1994) sang and played the guitar and banjo on over 1,000 jazz, swing, blues, and bebop records. He is a member of the Jazz Hall of Fame and recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts Music Master Award. Alyn Shipton is a writer and broadcaster on jazz. He is the editor of A Life in Jazz, the first volume of Danny Barker's memoirs.

American Fun

Four Centuries of Joyous Revolt

American Fun

Here is an animated and wonderfully engaging work of cultural history that lays out America’s unruly past by describing the ways in which cutting loose has always been, and still is, an essential part of what it means to be an American. From the time the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth Rock, Americans have defied their stodgy rules and hierarchies with pranks, dances, stunts, and wild parties, shaping the national character in profound and lasting ways. In the nation’s earlier eras, revelers flouted Puritans, Patriots pranked Redcoats, slaves lampooned masters, and forty-niners bucked the saddles of an increasingly uptight middle class. In the twentieth century, fun-loving Americans celebrated this heritage and pushed it even further: flappers “barney-mugged” in “petting pantries,” Yippies showered the New York Stock Exchange with dollar bills, and B-boys invented hip-hop in a war zone in the Bronx. This is the surprising and revelatory history that John Beckman recounts in American Fun. Tying together captivating stories of Americans’ “pursuit of happiness”—and distinguishing between real, risky fun and the bland amusements that paved the way for Hollywood, Disneyland, and Xbox—Beckman redefines American culture with a delightful and provocative thesis. (With black-and-white illustrations throughout.) From the Hardcover edition.

Buddy Bolden's Storyville Blues

Buddy Bolden's Storyville Blues

In the USA around 1900, the blacks in the South are robbed of the rights they were granted after the Civil War, and New Orleans is like a powder keg. The young beautiful Creole girl Nora Bass, living with the charismatic jazz pioneer Buddy Bolden, candidly narrates about those days, her childhood and relationship problems. Buddy has mistresses around town, and Nora loves to dance naked in Storyville, the Red Light District. One July day in 1900 the black man Robert Charles rebels against the abuse of power by the police, and the powder keg explodes. During the following days, a white mob tries to catch all the black people they can locate and a huge massacre is a real threat. Then Nora takes a fatal decision that brings her own life in danger.

Early Twentieth-Century Brass Idioms

Art, Jazz, and Other Popular Traditions

Early Twentieth-Century Brass Idioms

The work of multiple scholars is combined in this single volume, bringing together in conversation the traditions of brass instrumentalism and jazz idiom. Early Twentieth-Century Brass Idioms: Art, Jazz, and Other Popular Traditions, edited by Howard T. Weiner, features articles by some of the most distinguished jazz and brass scholars and performers in the world. The topics covered span continents and decades and bridge gaps that until now remained uncrossed. Two primary themes emerge throughout the book and enter into dialogue with each other: the contribution brass performers made to the evolution of jazz in the early 20th century, and the influence jazz and popular music idioms had on the evolution of brass performance. The 13 articles in this volume cover a range of topics from Italian jazz trumpet style to the origins of jazz improvisation to the role of brass in klezmer music. New Orleans becomes a focal point as the essays examine the work of many important musicians, including Louis Armstrong, Buddy Bolden, Bunk Johnson, King Oliver, James Reese Europe, and Newell 'Spiegle' Willcox. Included as well is an interview with two legends of jazz trumpet, William Fielder and Joe Wilder, and the renowned performer and teacher Jimmy Owens reveals his practice techniques. Many of the essays include bibliographies, discographies, and other reference information. The meeting of the Historic Brass Society and the Institute of Jazz Studies represents the first time scholars have gathered to bring these two fields into such comprehensive discussion with each other. Early Twentieth-Century Brass Idioms: Art, Jazz, and Other Popular Traditions presents this historic conversation.

Creating Jazz Counterpoint

New Orleans, Barbershop Harmony, and the Blues

Creating Jazz Counterpoint

The book Jazzmen (1939) claimed New Orleans as the birthplace of jazz and introduced the legend of Buddy Bolden as the “First Man of Jazz.” Much of the information that the book relied on came from a highly controversial source: Bunk Johnson. He claimed to have played with Bolden and that together they had pioneered jazz. Johnson made many recordings talking about and playing the music of the Bolden era. These recordings have been treated with skepticism because of doubts about Johnson’s credibility. Using oral histories, the Jazzmen interview notes, and unpublished archive material, this book confirms that Bunk Johnson did play with Bolden. This confirmation, in turn, has profound implications for Johnson’s recorded legacy in describing the music of the early years of New Orleans jazz. New Orleans jazz was different from ragtime in a number of ways. It was a music that was collectively improvised, and it carried a new tonality—the tonality of the blues. How early jazz musicians improvised together and how the blues became a part of jazz has until now been a mystery. Part of the reason New Orleans jazz developed as it did is that all the prominent jazz pioneers, including Buddy Bolden, Bunk Johnson, Louis Armstrong, Sidney Bechet, Johnny Dodds, and Kid Ory, sang in barbershop (or barroom) quartets. This book describes in both historical and musical terms how the practices of quartet singing were converted to the instruments of a jazz band, and how this, in turn, produced collectively improvised, blues-inflected jazz, that unique sound of New Orleans.

The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture

Volume 12: Music

The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture

Southern music has flourished as a meeting ground for the traditions of West African and European peoples in the region, leading to the evolution of various traditional folk genres, bluegrass, country, jazz, gospel, rock, blues, and southern hip-hop. This much-anticipated volume in The New Encyclopedia of Southern Culture celebrates an essential element of southern life and makes available for the first time a stand-alone reference to the music and music makers of the American South. With nearly double the number of entries devoted to music in the original Encyclopedia, this volume includes 30 thematic essays, covering topics such as ragtime, zydeco, folk music festivals, minstrelsy, rockabilly, white and black gospel traditions, and southern rock. And it features 174 topical and biographical entries, focusing on artists and musical outlets. From Mahalia Jackson to R.E.M., from Doc Watson to OutKast, this volume considers a diverse array of topics, drawing on the best historical and contemporary scholarship on southern music. It is a book for all southerners and for all serious music lovers, wherever they live.

The Promise of the New South

Life After Reconstruction - 15th Anniversary Edition

The Promise of the New South

At a public picnic in the South in the 1890s, a young man paid five cents for his first chance to hear the revolutionary Edison talking machine. He eagerly listened as the soundman placed the needle down, only to find that through the tubes he held to his ears came the chilling sounds of a lynching. In this story, with its blend of new technology and old hatreds, genteel picnics and mob violence, Edward Ayers captures the history of the South in the years between Reconstruction and the turn of the century. Ranging from the Georgia coast to the Tennessee mountains, from the power brokers to tenant farmers, Ayers depicts a land of startling contrasts. Ayers takes us from remote Southern towns, revolutionized by the spread of the railroads, to the statehouses where Democratic Redeemers swept away the legacy of Reconstruction; from the small farmers, trapped into growing nothing but cotton, to the new industries of Birmingham; from abuse and intimacy in the family to tumultuous public meetings of the prohibitionists. He explores every aspect of society, politics, and the economy, detailing the importance of each in the emerging New South. Central to the entire story is the role of race relations, from alliances and friendships between blacks and whites to the spread of Jim Crows laws and disfranchisement. The teeming nineteenth-century South comes to life in these pages. When this book first appeared in 1992, it won a broad array of prizes and was a finalist for both the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize. The citation for the National Book Award declared Promise of the New South a vivid and masterfully detailed picture of the evolution of a new society. The Atlantic called it "one of the broadest and most original interpretations of southern history of the past twenty years.