Sunday

JULY 31ST


HAPPY BIRTHDAY ROY BARGY!


BIRTHDAYS






1894

Roy Bargy, piano/arranger

b. Newaygo, MI, USA.

d. Jan. 16, 1974, Vista, CA, USA.

Biography

~Scott Yanow

Although somewhat peripheral to jazz, pianist Roy Bargy recorded six piano solos (mostly in the novelty ragtime style) of interest during 1922-24 that, along with his 11 piano rolls, were reissued on a Folkways LP. Bargy had had 12 years of piano lessons starting from when he was five. He had originally planned to become a classical pianist, but instead started working in the popular music field. He played piano and organ at local movie houses, organized his own school orchestra and in 1919 began cutting piano rolls. The following year he was hired as pianist, arranger and musical director for the Benson Orchestra of Chicago.


In the mid-1920s, Bargy worked for a time with Isham Jones and then gained his greatest fame as pianist with Paul Whiteman (1928-40), where his "legitimate" technique allowed him to play both credible jazz and classical solos (such as "Rhapsody In Blue"). Bargy spent his later years working in the early '40s with Lanny Ross on radio and served as Jimmy Durante's musical director from 1943-63 before retiring. Bargy's best-known composition is "Pianoflage."

1877
Peter E. Bocage, leader
b. Algiers, LA, USA.
d. Dec. 3, 1967.
Also see Bocage Orig. Creole Serenaders
Jazz man Peter Bocage stands as a giant in the history of New Orleans traditional jazz. Born across the Mississippi River from New Orleans in Algiers, Bocage followed in his father's footsteps, playing music at venues, dances, rent parties, and street parades throughout the Crescent City area. He soon became a fixture at the famous club, Storyville, where "people paid to have a good time, any kind of good time you wanted", as the late, great Danny Barker recalled. The music rage of the day was Ragtime. By the age of 21, Bocage was the band leader of one of the most popular ragtime bands, the Superior Orchestra. At that time, Bocage was playing violin. He hired in a horn player named Bunk Johnson.

The sound Bocage was striving for was soft and refined, like the Creole culture from which he came. Eventually, the hotter sound, exemplified by Buddy Bolden won out, but people later came back around to enjoying the softer tones ocage played for them years later at the renowned Preservation Hall in the French Quarter of New Orleans. In the mid 1910's, Bocage decided to take up the trumpet himself, an instrument of which he ultimately became master. He played in all kinds of brass bands in New Orleans, from the Onward, the Tuxedo and the Excelsior Brass Bands, the last of which he led for 10 years. His musical colleagues included Joe "King" Oliver, Henry Allen, Sr., and Louis Armstrong. With Fate Marabel, Bocage formed the first integrated band the South had ever seen. He was a mover and shaker, once leaving New Orleans to gig at the Cotton Club in New York, and with Sydney Bechet in Boston. He recorded with Piron's New Orleans Orchestra and his own Creole Serenaders. This band appeared in various permutations from the thirties until not long before Bocage's death in 1967.

In 1961, a CD was pressed as part of the New Orleans Living Legends series. This one featured Peter Bocage with the Creole Serenaders & The Love Jiles Ragtime Orchestra. The CD gives the listener a good feel for that historic time, with tunes like Bocage's Moma's Gone, Goodbye, and B-Flat Society Blues; Piron's I Wish I Could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate; along with Bouncing Around, The Purple Rose of Cairo, and TheHilarity Rag. Bocage often played at the Preservation Hall with other musicians of his day, like Sweet Emma Barrett, Jim Robinson, and Louis Cottrell, Jr.. People from all over the world flocked to see the old time musicians who spanned the history of jazz. They are all gone on home now; there will never be an era like the one Peter Bocage lived through again. But the legacy of thatspecial time lives on.
~ Rose of Sharon Witmer


1891
Ernest "Big" Crawford, bass
Ernest "Big" Crawford (July 31, 1897 - March, 1956, Memphis, Tennessee) was an American blues double bassist who played with Muddy Waters, Sunnyland Slim, Little Walter, Memphis Minnie, Jimmy Rogers, Big Maceo, Big Bill Broonzy and Memphis Slim.



1918
Henry "Hank" Jones, Piano b. Vicksburg, MS. USA. 
Accompanied Billy Eckstine and Ella Fitzgerald. 
He led the Hank Jones Trio
Biography~ Scott Yanow
 The oldest of the three illustrious Jones brothers (which include Thad and Elvin), Hank Jones was also the first of the great Detroit pianists (including Tommy Flanagan, Barry Harris and Roland Hanna) to emerge after World War II although by then he had long since left town. Jones played in territory bands while a teenager and in 1944 he moved to New York to play with Hot Lips Page. He had stints with John Kirby, Howard McGhee, Coleman Hawkins, Andy Kirk and Billy Eckstine. Influenced by Teddy Wilson and Art Tatum, Jones' style was also open to bebop and his accessible playing was flexible enough to fit into many genres. He was on several Jazz at the Philharmonic tours (starting in 1947), worked as accompanist for Ella Fitzgerald (1948-53) and recorded with Charlie Parker. In the 1950s Jones performed with Artie Shaw, Benny Goodman, Lester Young, Cannonball Adderley and many others. He was on the staff of CBS during 1959-1976 but always remained active in jazz. In the late '70s Jones was the pianist in the Broadway musical Ain't Misbehavin' and he recorded with a pickup unit dubbed the Great Jazz Trio which at various times includes Ron Carter, Buster Williams or Eddie Gomez on bass and Tony Williams, Al Foster or Jimmy Cobb on drums. Among the many labels that Hank Jones has recorded for as a leader are Verve, Savoy, Epic, Golden Crest, Capitol, Argo, ABC-Paramount, Impulse, Concord, East Wind, Muse, Galaxy, Black & Blue, MPS, Inner City and Chiaroscuro.



1915
George Kelly, Tenor Sax
b. Miami, FL, USA. d. 1985.
Worked with Tiny Grimes
Biography~ Scott Yanow
George Kelly was the only musician to be a regular member of both Al Cooper's Savoy Sultans of the 1940's and Panama Francis' Savoy Sultans of 40 years later. Kelly began on the piano when he was nine before switching to alto and finally tenor. He played locally in Florida and Panama Francis was an early sideman in his band the Cavaliers; Kelly also gigged with Zack Whyte in 1938. After moving to New York, the tenorman was with the Sultans during 1941-44. Other associations included Rex Stewart (1946), bassist Lucille Dixon (1948-50) and Tiny Grimes' Highlanders.
Kelly mostly worked with lesser-known groups in the 1950's and 60's (other than Cozy Cole in 1965), toured Europe with Jay McShann and Tiny Grimes in 1970 and during 1970-76 he was part of the Ink Spots' backup band. During his last decade he had a higher profile, visiting Europe with Ram Ramirez (1976) and being part of both the new Savoy Sultans and the Harlem Jazz and Blues Band. Kelly had a strong tenor tone that looked back towards the swing era while he was clearly aware of later developments. In addition to many sideman appearances during the 1976-84 period, George Kelly recorded as a leader for Dharma (1976), Black & Blue (1979), Barron (1982), Vanacore (1982), Sam Hot (1984) and Stash (a tribute to Don Redman in 1984).



1907
Roy Milton, Blues Vocals/Drums
b. Wynnewood, OK, USA.
d. Sept. 18, 1983, Los Angeles, CA, USA.
Biography~ Bill Dahl
As in-the-pocket drummer of his own jump blues combo, the Solid Senders, Roy Milton was in a perfect position to drive his outfit just as hard or soft as he so desired. With his stellar sense of swing, Milton did just that; his steady backbeat on his 1946 single for Art Rupe's fledgling Juke Box imprint, "R.M. Blues," helped steer it to the uppermost reaches of the R&B charts (his assured vocal didn't hurt either). Milton spent his early years on an Indian reservation in Oklahoma (his maternal grandmother was a Native American) before moving to Tulsa. 
He sang with Ernie Fields's territory band during the late '20s and began doubling on drums when the band's regular trapsman got arrested one fateful evening. In the mood to leave Fields in 1933, Milton wandered west to Los Angeles and formed the Solid Senders. 1945 was a big year for him -- along with signing with Juke Box (soon to be renamed Specialty), the band filmed three soundies with singer June Richmond. "R.M. Blues" was such a huge seller that it established Specialty as a viable concern for the long haul. Rupe knew a good thing when he saw it, recording Milton early and often through 1953. He was rewarded with 19 Top Ten R&B hits by the Solid Senders, including "Milton's Boogie," "True Blues," "Hop, Skip and Jump," "Information Blues," "Oh Babe" (a torrid cover of Louis Prima's jivey jump), and "Best Wishes." Milton's resident boogie piano specialist, Camille Howard, also sang on several Milton platters, including the 1947 hit "Thrill Me," concurrently building a solo career on Specialty. 
 After amassing a voluminous catalog as one of Specialty's early bedrocks, Milton moved on to Dootone, King (there he cut the delectable instrumental "Succotash"), and Warwick (where he eked out a minor R&B hit in 1961, "Red Light") with notably less commercial success. Sadly, even though he helped pioneer the postwar R&B medium, rock & roll had rendered Milton an anachronism. The drummer remained active nonetheless, thrilling the throng at the 1970 Monterey Jazz Festival as part of Johnny Otis's all-star troupe. It's a safe bet he was swinging until the very end.
Roy Milton - Wikipedia
1919
David Saxon, songwriter
b. New York (Brooklyn), NY, USA.
Wrote for Louis Jordan Orch.


Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:

1966.
Famed Swing era pianist
Bud Powell died in New York City.
Age: 41.

1986.
Teddy Wilson, piano
died in New Britain, CT, USA.
Age: 73.


Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:  



1919



All Star Trio
  • Cleo



Ben Selvin and his Orchestra - I'm Forever Blowing Bubbles


1924



Henderson's Club Alabam Orchestra
  • The Gourge Of Armour Avenue


Bessie Smith - Salt Water Blues


1928


Harry Reser and his Orchestra
1929




Irving Mills' Hotsy-Totsy Gang - Can't We Get Together?

Irving Mills' Hotsy-Totsy Gang - Some Fun
1930


Fess Williams and his Royal Flush Orchestra

McKinney's Cotton Pickers - Cotton Picker's Scat


1934





"Nagasaki"  (1928) - The Six Jumping Jacks. (Harry Reser Orch.)



Hot gingerbread and dynamite,
Boy, I drink nothing but that each night,
Back in Nagasaki where the fellows chew tobaccky
And the women wicky-wacky-woo!
Aw, man, how they entertain,
I mean, they hurry a hurricane.
Back in Nagasaki where the fellows chew tobaccky
And the women wicky-wacky-woo!
Fujiama, got a mama, 
Then your troubles increase, boy! 
It's a bottle in a, bottle in a, bottle in a, bottlein a, bottle in a Nagasaki! 
They hug and kiss each night,
By jingo, boys, worth that price!
Back in Nagasaki where the fellows chew tobaccky
And the women wicky-wacky-woo!
Back in Nagasaki where the fellows chew tobaccky
And the women wicky-wacky-woo!


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