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Happy Birthday Frank Joseph Christian


Herman "Trigger" Alpert, bass 
b. Indianapolis, IN, USA.
A traditional jazz bassist and bandleader, Trigger Alpert has issued one album on Riverside in 1956 titled Trigger Happy! It had an all-star lineup with Tony Scott, Zoot Sims, Al Cohn, Joe Wilder, Urbie Green and Ed Shaugnessy joining Alpert. Alpert studied music at Indiana University in the late '30s, then played with Alvino Rey in New York during 1940, and toured and recorded with Glenn Miller in the early '40s. Alpert worked briefly with Tex Beneke and did a radio program with Benny Goodman. He later recorded with Bud Freeman, Ella Fitzgerald, Muggsy Spanier, Roy Eldridge, Louis Armstrong, Ray McKinley and Bernie Leighton in 1945 and 1946. He later worked with Frank Sinatra, Woody Herman and Jerry Jerome in 1946 and 1947, and had recording sessions with Artie Shaw, Coleman Hawkins, the Sauter-Finegan Orchestra, Mundell Lowe, Don Elliott, Gene Krupa and Buddy Rich from 1950-1962. During that time, he also worked for CBS. Alpert left the music business in 1970, becoming a photographer.
~ Ron Wynn

Kitty Carlisle (Hart), vocals
née: Catharine Conn.
Recalled mostly for her work in Broadway Musicals. Later married producer Moss Hart.
Through quirks of modern celebrity, singer Kitty Carlisle is probably most familiar to Americans as a panelist on the game show To Tell the Truth. She was a regular on the program in its original incarnation in the 1950s and '60s with host Bud Collyer, in the '70s with Garry Moore and later Joe Garagiola, in the '80s with Robin Ward, and in the early 1990s with Alex Trebek. Ancient and ghostly but still sharp, she even appeared on the John O'Hurley-hosted version in 2002, when she was 92.

Carlisle was raised in a well-to-do family. Her home is decorated with paintings by longtime friends Irving Berlin, Noel Coward, and George Gershwin. Her grandfather fought in the Civil War (for the Confederates), and Kitty Dukakis was named after Carlisle (their mothers were friends). As a young girl, Carlisle studied drama in Europe. Her first professional job was in a touring company of Rio Rita, where she played several different roles in more than 1,000 performances. She was a regular on Broadway from the 1930s to the 1980s, and at the Metropolitan Opera, she sang as Count Orlovsky in Die Fledermaus and in the title role in Carmen. She made occasional appearances in film, singing a selection from Verdi's Il Travatore in the Marx Brothers' A Night At the Opera. She also sang in Woody Allen's Radio Days, and had a small role in Six Degrees of Separation.
In her later years, she served two decades as chair of the New York State Council of the Arts, under four governors.
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Frank Joseph Christian
b. New Orleans, LA, USA, d. Nov. 27, 1973. 
Brother of trombonist Emile Christian.
Frank Joseph Christian (September 3, 1887 - November 27, 1973) was an early jazz trumpeter. Frank Joseph Christian was born in the Bywater neighborhood of downtown New Orleans, Louisiana. In an interview for Tulane's Jazz Archives, he described his family ancestry as "cayudle", a Creole French term for a mutt or mongrel. His brothers Charles (1886 - 1964) and Emile Christian also worked as professional musicians. Frank showed musical versatility at a young age, and was playing trumpet, clarinet, violin, and tuba professionally by his teens. He started working with bandleader Papa Jack Laine about 1908 and became a mainstay in Laine's bands. He also worked in the bands of Tom Brown, Johnny Fischer, and led his own band.
In 1916 Frank Christian was the first choice of Alcide Nunez, Eddie Edwards, and Johnny Stein to play in a band they had been hired to bring north to Chicago. Christian initially agreed and rehearsed with the band before it left for the north, but then backed down as he had a full schedular of job offers in New Orleans and thought this less risky than leaving town. Christian was replaced by Nick LaRocca, and thus Frank Christian missed his chance to be in the Original Dixieland Jass Band which made the first jazz recordings in 1917. After hearing of the commercial success of the O.D.J.B. and other New Orleans musicians who went north, Christian went to play in Chicago with Fischer and Anton Lada. He then went to New York City in response to an offer to start a New Orleans style band to play at a Manhattan dance club called The Alamo.

Frank Christian Anton Lada Band
From left to right: Anton "Tony" Lada (drums); Frank L'Hotag (trombone); Frank Christian (trumpet); Johnny Fischer (legal name John Henry Phillips) (clarinet); Ernie Erdman (piano and xylophone). Chicago, late 1917 or early 1918. One of the early New Orleans jazz bands in Chicago. Photo by DeHaven, Chicago, via Alcide Nunez family collection, copied courtesy of the late Eugene Nunez.
When Christian arrived in New York, Nick LaRocca of the Original Dixieland Jass Band was concerned about competition and offered Christian $200 and a return railway ticket to go back to New Orleans; Christian turned the offer down. He formed the Original New Orleans Jazz Band with whom he recorded on cornet in 1918 and 1919. He was originally the leader of the band, but later it was agreed to turn leadership over to the band's extroverted pianist, Jimmie Durante. After Durante broke up his band Frank Christian toured on Vaudeville with Gilda Gray and played in various theater and dance bands through the 1920s. He returned home to work his later years in New Orleans, where he died.

Tom Glazer, vocals
Member: The Do-Re-Mi Children's Chorus
Thomas Zachariah "Tom" Glazer (September 2, 1914 - February 21, 2003) was an American folk singer and songwriter known primarily as a composer of ballads, including: "Because All Men Are Brothers", recorded by The Weavers and Peter, Paul and Mary, "Talking Inflation Blues", recorded by Bob Dylan, and "A Dollar Ain't A Dollar Anymore". He wrote the lyrics to the songs "Melody of Love" (1954), and "Skokian" (1954).
Clyde L. Hurley, Jr., trumpet
b. Fort Worth, TX, USA. d. 1963
Clyde Hurley was a trumpeter during the big band era. He was born on September 3, 1916 in Fort Worth, Texas. Scott Yanow describes Hurley as "a(n excellent) trumpeter with a fat tone and a hard-driving style." He died on August 15, 1963 in Fort Worth.
Self taught, he learned to play the trumpet by playing along with Louis Armstrong records. He began his career working with territory bands. In 1937, Hurley joined Ben Pollack’s band. After a while with Pollack, Hurley became a studio musician in Los Angeles. Hurley was playing with Paul Whiteman at the Glen Island Casino in New York when he was asked to join Glenn Miller's band. He signed with Miller in 1938.
During the time he was with Miller, Hurley was one of the key soloists. He appeared on the bands studio recordings and live performances in such venues as Carnegie Hall. Hurley played the trumpet solo on Glenn Miller’s "In The Mood" and "Tuxedo Junction." Hurley left Miller in 1940 to work withTommy Dorsey and then joined Artie Shaw in 1941.
After his stint with Shaw, he did freelance work for the movie studios. He worked for MGM from 1944 to 1949 and for NBC from 1950 to 1955. During the late 1950s, Hurley played in Dixieland groups, recording with Matty Matlock’s Rampart Street Paraders. In 1954, he recorded live with Ralph Suttonand Edmond Hall at the Club Hangover. His studio work in the 1950s included sessions with Paul Weston. He played solo on "Memories of You" on Weston's "Solo Flight" album.

Donna King, vocals.
née: Donna Driggs (of Kings Sisters fame)

Noah Lewis
b. Henning, TN, USA, d. eb. 7, 1961
(gangrene following frostbite).
A key figure on the Memphis jug band circuit of the 1920s, singer and harpist Noah Lewis was born September 3, 1895 in Henning, Tennessee. Upon relocating to Memphis, he teamed with Gus Cannon, becoming an essential component of Cannon's Jug Stompers; the group made their debut recordings for the Paramount label in 1927, with several more sessions to follow prior to their final date in late 1930. On a series of sides cut in the first week of October 1929, Lewis made his debut as a name artist, cutting three blistering harmonica solos as well as "Going to Germany," which spotlighted his plaintive vocal style. Later recording with Yank Rachell and John Estes, as the Depression wore on Lewis slipped into obscurity, living a life of extreme poverty; his death on February 7, 1961 was a result of gangrene brought on by frostbite.
~ Jason Ankeny
Gus Cannon, Ashley Thomson and Noah Lewis.
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Jimmy Riddle
C&W chromatic harmonica b. Dyersburg, TN, USA. Played with Roy Acuff's band.
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Memphis Slim piano/vocals/composer 
b. Memphis, TN, USA. 
d. Feb. 24, 1988, Paris, France. 
né: John Peter Chatman. 
Memphis Slim (3 September 1915 in Memphis, Tennessee – 24 February 1988 in Paris, France) was a blues pianist and singer. Life and career His birth name was John Len Chatman, although he claimed to be have been born Peter Chatman. It is commonly believed, though, that he took the name to honour of his father, Peter Chatman Sr., when he first recorded for Okeh Records in 1940).
Although he performed under the name Memphis Slim for most of his career, he continued to publish songs under the name Peter Chatman. A prolific artist who brought a brisk air of urban sophistication[citation needed] to his frequently stunning[citation needed] presentation, Memphis Slim ranks with the greatest blues pianists of all time. He Big Bill Broonzy advised him early in his career to develop a style of his own to heart instead of imitating his idol Roosevelt Sykes.  Memphis Slim took his name from Memphis, where he was born and raised. Memphis Slim got his start playing the blues at the Midway Café, at 357 Beale Street (southeast corner of Fourth and Beale Street's) in Memphis in 1931. After his early career in Memphis, where he emulated barrelhouse piano players like Roosevelt Sykes and Speckled Red, he moved to Chicago, Illinois and recorded for Okeh Records (as Peter Chatman & His Washboard Band) in 1940. The same year he also recorded for Bluebird Records as Memphis Slim. He played piano as Big Bill Broonzy's partner until 1944. Broonzy, also a sophisticated performer, urged him to develop his own style. This polish gave Memphis Slim opportunities not only in the juke joints he had been playing, but also in the "uptown" nightclubs. 
Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketAfter World War II Slim joined Hy-Tone Records, cutting eight tracks that were later picked up by King. Lee Egalnick's Miracle label recorded the pianist in 1947; backed by his jumping band, the House Rockers (its members usually included saxophonists Alex Atkins and Ernest Cotton), Slim recorded his classic "Lend Me Your Love" and "Rockin' the House." The next year brought the landmark "Nobody Loves Me" (better known via subsequent covers by Lowell Fulson, Joe Williams, and B.B. King as "Everyday I Have the Blues") and the heartbroken "Messin' Around (With the Blues)."The pianist kept on label-hopping, moving from Miracle to Peacock to Premium (where he recorded the first version of the down-tempo blues "Mother Earth") to Chess to Mercury before staying put at Chicago's United Records from 1952 to 1954. This was a particularly fertile period for the pianist; he recruited his first permanent guitarist, Matt Murphy, who performed "The Come Back," "Sassy Mae," and "Memphis Slim U.S.A." He also worked with bassman Willie Dixon.
In all, he recorded more than 20 albums under his own name, and appeared on many more recordings as a sideman.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at PhotobucketSlim left the United States for good in 1962. A tour of Europe in partnership with bassist Willie Dixon a couple of years earlier had so intrigued the pianist that he moved permanently to Paris, where he had more recording and touring possibilities seemed limitless and he was treated with greater respect than in the United States. He remained there until his death in 1988. In the last years of his life, he teamed up with respected Jazz Drummer George Collier (George Slepyan). The two toured Europe together and became great friends. George died in Paris in August 1987. Slim appeared very little after George's death. Two years before his death, Memphis Slim was named a Commander in the Ordre des Arts et des Lettres by the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of France. Memphis Slim died on 24 February, 1988 in Paris at the age of 72. During his lifetime, he cut over 500 recordings and influenced blues pianists that followed him for decades.
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Hank Thompson
C&W guitar/vocals
b. Waco, TX, USA.
Henry William Thompson.
Member: 'Hank Thompson & His Brazos Valley Boys'. Hank has recorded in each of the seven decades since he recorded "Whoa, Sailor" in 1946. He has sold over 60 million recordings and has toured extensively around the globe.

Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:

Frank Sinatra bid adieu to the
Tommy Dorsey Band as he started
his solo singing career.

Harold "Doc" Bagby, organ
died in New York, NY, USA.

Thomas "Mutt" Carey, cornet
died in Elsinore, CA, USA.
Age: 57
Joseph Francis Lamb, piano
died in New York (Brooklyn), NY, USA.
Albert Nicholas, clarinet
died in BaseL, Switzerland
Age: 73
Jo Jones
died in New York City.
Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:


Original Dixieland Jass Band
At The Jass Band Ball


Earl Fuller's Rector Novelty Orchestra - Russian Rag


Art Hickman and his Orchestra

Waring's Pennsylvanians
  • Let's Wander Away


Paul Whiteman and his Orchestra - In A Little Spanish Town ('Twas On A Night Like This)
  • Trudy


Red Nichols' Five Pennies - Can Yo' Hear Me Calling Caroline?

Red Nichols' Five Pennies - Margie


~Words and music by Frank Loesser

Can't you hear me calling, Caroline
It's my heart a-calling thine
Lordy, how I miss you gal of mine
Wish that I could kiss you, Caroline (Caroline)
Ain't no use now for the sun to shine
Caroline, Caroline
Can't you hear my lips saying, can't you hear my soul a-praying
Can't you hear me calling, hear this heart of mine
Oh, can't you hear me calling, Caroline
It's my heart a-calling thine
(Oh, Lord) Lordy, how I miss you gal of mine
Wish that i could kiss you, Caroline
There ain't no use, now, for the sun to shine
Caroline (Caroline), Caroline (Caroline)
Can't you hear my lips saying
Can't you hear my soul praying
Can't you hear me sighing for you gal of mine
Lingering in the twilight, can't you hear my fool heart pine
Can't you hear me calling, Caroline

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