Monday

JUNE 27TH


Music by Maceo Pinkard, songwriter

BIRTHDAYS



Jonah Jones, Andy Gibson & Shad Collins, New Orleans, ph. Milt Hinton, New Orleans, 1941
1910
Lester "Shad" Collins, Trumpet
b. Elizabeth, NJ, USA.
d. June 1978.
né: Lester Rallingston Collins.
Member: 'Count Basie Orchestra'
Lester Rallingston "Shad" Collins (June 27, 1910 – June 6, 1978) was an American jazz trumpet player, composer and arranger, who played in several leading bands between the 1930s and 1950s, including those led by Chick Webb, Benny Carter, Count Basie, Lester Young, Cab Calloway and Sam "The Man" Taylor.

Life and career

Born in Elizabeth, New Jersey, the son of a clergyman, he acquired the nickname of "Shad" in his teens, and by the late 1920s had joined Charlie Dixon's band. He also performed with pianist Eddie White, before joining Chick Webb's band in 1931. In the mid-1930s he played in Teddy Hill's band, with whom he toured in Britain and Europe, before joining the Count Basie Orchestra.[1] He performed in Basie's band at the From Spirituals to Swing concerts in New York City in 1938 and 1939. He also worked in the late 1930s in bands led by Benny Carter, Lester Young and Don Redman, among others.
In 1941, he replaced Dizzy Gillespie in Cab Calloway's band, and remained with Calloway until 1943 and again between 1944 and 1946. He also worked and recorded in the 1940s with Oran "Hot Lips" Page. In the 1950s, he played in Jimmy Rushing's band, and with Sam "The Man" Taylor, when he developed a style more suited to the rhythm and blues music then popular. He worked more on a part-time basis during the 1960s.
Collins was also known as a composer and arranger, responsible for the frequently recorded tune "Rock-a-Bye Basie" among others.






24-year-old Billie Holiday recording "Strange Fruit" for Commodore Records, April 20, 1939; the guitarist is Jimmy McLin. Photo: copyright © the Estate of Charles Peterson.
1908
Jimmy Mclin, Guitar
b. Brookesville, FL, USA.
d. Dec. 15, 1983, USA.
This Florida musician started out on banjo in the '20s but switched to guitar shortly thereafter, a trend among jazz musicians that had a worse effect on the status of the banjo than being used on the soundtrack to Deliverance. Most jazz listeners will come across Jimmy McLin while listening to the studio masterworks of jazz vocalist Billie Holiday recorded in the late '30s, a gig he most likely wound up with through his association with pianist Teddy Wilson, one of that singer's favorite accompanists.
McLin began his professional career in the mid-'20s out of Jacksonville, moving to New York in 1928 where he began a professional association with historic ragtime and jazz pianist James P. Johnson. He also played with slightly more modernistic jazzmen such as trumpeter Roy Eldridge. By 1937, he began working with keyboardist Willie "the Lion" Smith, whose Decca recording of "The Swampland Is Calling Me" has been picked as a good example of McLin's thoughtful and sensitive guitar accompaniment, most of which is based around chording and rhythm playing, although with many interesting variations. Around this time he was chosen for some of the studio groups Teddy Wilson assembled to back Holiday, then recording prolifically. This material has been re-released with verve and no attention to the world's dwindling supply of raw materials, under both the names of Holiday and Wilson and on a variety of labels.
For the next years, McLin also played hot jazz with clarinetist Buster Bailey and in 1940 gigged with New Orleans soprano saxophonist supreme Sidney Bechet. In the early '40s he also worked with Dave Nelson and the swing pianist Claude Hopkins. He joined the Navy shortly after this gig wound up, playing both trombone and mellophone in the armed forces bands. In 1945 he rejoined Hopkins, who must have been working on some pretty difficult charts as McLin took three years off to study music, then rejoined the Hopkins band once again in 1950. Eventually he returned to Florida and pretty much retired from jazz playing. Like several other guitarists from his generation, his rhythmic playing was useful to touring vocal groups such as the popular Ink Spots, with whom McLin worked off and on until his death.
~ Eugene Chadbourne



1897
Maceo Pinkard, songwriter
b. Bluefield, W. VA, USA.
d. June 21, 1962, New York, NY, USA.
Biography
~by John Bush
The songwriter who made "Sweet Georgia Brown" a popular standard for decades after its composition, Maceo Pinkard was born in Bluefield, WV, in 1897. He graduated from the Bluefield Colored Institute in 1914 and wrote his first major song ("I'm Goin' Back Home") one year later. Introduced by Ben Bernie & His Orchestra soon after it was composed in 1925, "Sweet Georgia Brown" -- written by Pinkard, Bernie, and Ken Casey -- nevertheless became most popular after the Harlem Globetrotters basketball team began using it as an anthem. 

An overview of the career of Maceo Pinkard, 2008 inductee in the West Virginia Music Hall of Fame.

Among Pinkard's other compositions were "Sugar, That Sugar Baby of Mine" and "Them There Eyes" the latter introduced in 1930 by Gus Arnheim, but most popular through an association with Billie Holiday ten years later. Maceo Pinkard died in 1962.


1897
Tony Sbarbaro, Drums
b. New Orleans, LA, USA.
d.
by ~Eugene Chadbourne
Born Antonio Sparbaro, this child of one of Louisiana's many Sicilian immigrant families was drumming as early as 1911 with the Frayle Brothers Band. From there, he joined Papa Jack Laine's Reliance Band, the message of which must have been a musician's need for self reliance, since members such as this artist needed to freelance elsewhere to make ends meet. Sbabaro's side projects included bands led by Merritt Brunnies and accompanying the interesting pianist Carl Randall.
In 1916, the drummer headed North for Chicago and a gig with the Original Dixieland Jazz Band, the first jazz group to be documented on a recording, resulting in the first so-called jazz record ever released. The two sides made by the band in early 1917 -- one for the Victor Talking Machine Company and then one for the Columbia Graphophone Company -- helped create a new musical fad called "jass" by the general public. The spelling of the word with two z's only became common a few years later. At the time of its recording debut, the group also included cornetist Nick LaRocca, clarinetist Larry Shields, trombonist Eddie Edwards, and pianist Harry Ragas. For Sbarbaro, the job is certainly in the running for setting a record for longest occupied drum chair; 50 years later, the drummer was the only original member still in the lineup when the band finally decided to call it quits.

Original Dixieland Jass Band in 1917. Tony Sbarbaro,
Nick La Rocca, Yellow Nunez, Eddie Edwards, Henry Ragas.
He wrote some of the group's best-known original numbers, including the dour "Mourning Blues." He also took over leadership of the band sometime around the 30th year of its existence, a good a time as any to take charge of an operation. His close association with the Dixieland scene, particularly the allegiance to the Chicago-based revival band, stereotyped him as a typical New Orleans drummer, not in itself a bad thing. Perhaps a bit like being called a "typical filet mignon." Also sometimes using the stage name Tony Spargo, the drummer actually came from a different percussion tradition that involved more emphasis on flashy showmanship and concentrated on rhythmic improvisation instead of the expert groove-keeping for which New Orleans percussionists are known.


Sbarbaro came more out of ragtime and circus band playing traditions, and percussionists who enjoy the elaborate drum setups of some drummers from this period would enjoy checking out this man's recordings, circa 1917. Hopefully, he had some help carting his stuff into the studio that day as he utilized a full woodblock set, cowbells, and custom snare and bass drum setups. He was a master of an early percussion technique known as double-drumming, in which the player uses the butt of the drum stick to strike the bass drum. This form of playing of course predates the use of the notoriously squeaky bass drum pedal.
Sbarbaro's set was typical of what a ragtime drummer would use, with bass drum offset by Chinese tom-toms, a pair of cymbals, wood blocks, cowbells, and a large kazoo that was used for novelty effects. The slang "traps" to describe drums is said to have originated with some of this drummer's zany shenanigans influenced by vaudeville, sometimes utilizing stuffed animals inside the drums. To prove that there is nothing new under the sun, avant-garde musicians have embraced Sbarbaro's style. Drummers, such as Paul Lovens, collect Chinese tom-toms, while Japanese-American percussionist Toshi Makihara performs an elaborate drum duet with a squirrel stuffed animal. Sbarbaro was featured at the New York's World Fair in 1941. In the '50s, he recorded with popular singer Connee Boswell.
In his later years, his playing became less flamboyant although it still included arresting showmanship. He also kept a playing scene going for himself with musicians from the classic genre of jazz in New York, a colorful crew of varying sizes that included the wonderfully named Miff Mole, Big Chief Moore, Pee Wee Erwin, and the infamous Eddie Condon. Several small jazz labels documented some of his small band activities from this period. He stopped performing in the '60s, overwhelmed by rock & roll.
Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:



1957.
Dudley Fosdick, vocals
died, USA.
Age: 55 of W. C. Elkins Singers



1974.
Cliff Friend
pianist/composer
died in Las Vegas, NV, USA.

1980.
Clarinetist Barney Bigard
died in Culver City, CA.
1986.
Joe Maphis died.
Age: 65. 
In the late '40s and early '50s, Joe and Rose Maphis were a popular husband-and-wife act singing traditional material. Their biggest hit was the honky-tonk anthem "Dim Lights, Thick Smoke (And Loud, Loud Music)". While Joe could played everything with strings on it, he especially liked the twin-neck guitar.
Joe Maphis - Wikipedia


Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:



1922



Club Royal Orchestra - Dancing Fool
  • The Sneak

1923


Viola McCoy

Bleeding Hearted Blues
The Cotton Pickers - Ducks Quack
1928


Johnny Hamp's Kentucky Serenaders - C-O-N-S-T-A-N-T-I-N-O-P-L-E
Coon Sanders Nighthawks Orchestra

Coon Sanders Nighthawks Orchestra - Blazin'

Coon Sanders Nighthawks Orchestra - Too Busy!



1929


Abe Lyman's California Ambassador Hotel Orchestra
  • Junior
  • Suzanna

1932


Waring's Pennsylvanians -

  • Holding My Honey's Hand

    • Old Yazoo - Vocal refrain by Frank Zullo and chorus


LYRICS:


Bleeding Heart Blues
(Austin)

When you sad and lonely,
Thinking about you only,
Feeling disgusted and blue,
Ah, your heart is aching,
Yes, it's almost breaking,
No one to tell your troubles to,
That's the time you hang your head
And begin to cry.
All your friends forsake you,
Troubles overtake you.
And your good man turns you down,
Evil talk about you,
Everybody doubt you,
And your friends can't be found,
Not a soul to ease your pain,
You will plead in vain,
You've got those bleeding hearted blues.
Yeah, baby, tell me what's on your mind,
Pretty Papa, tell me what's on your mind;
You keep my poor heart achin',
I'm worried all the time.
I give up every friend that I had,
Yes, I give up every friend that I had,
I give up my mother,
I even give up dear old dad.


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~confetta
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