"Tampa Red", (Blues)
b: Smithville, GA, USA.
d: March 19, 1981, Chicago, IL, USA.
~Biography by Barry Lee Pearson
Out of the dozens of fine slide guitarists who recorded blues, only a handful -- Elmore James, Muddy Waters, and Robert Johnson, for example -- left a clear imprint on tradition by creating a recognizable and widely imitated instrumental style. Tampa Red was another influential musical model.

During his heyday in the '20s and '30s, he was billed as "The Guitar Wizard," and his stunning slide work on steel National or electric guitar shows why he earned the title. His 30-year recording career produced hundreds of sides: hokum, pop, and jive, but mostly blues (including classic compositions "Anna Lou Blues," "Black Angel Blues," "Crying Won't Help You," "It Hurts Me Too," and "Love Her with a Feeling"). Early in Red's career, he teamed up with pianist, songwriter, and latter-day gospel composer Georgia Tom Dorsey, collaborating on double entendre classics like "Tight Like That."
Listeners who only know Tampa Red's hokum material are missing the deeper side of one of the mainstays of Chicago blues. His peers included Big Bill Broonzy, with whom he shared a special friendship. Members of Lester Melrose's musical mafia and drinking buddies, they once managed to sleep through both games of a Chicago White Sox doubleheader. Eventually alcohol caught up with Red, and he blamed his latter-day health problems on an inability to refuse a drink.
During Red's prime, his musical venues ran the gamut of blues institutions: down-home jukes, the streets, the vaudeville theater circuit, and the Chicago club scene. Due to his polish and theater experience, he is often described as a city musician or urban artist in contrast to many of his more limited musical contemporaries. Furthermore, his house served as the blues community's rehearsal hall and an informal booking agency. According to the testimony of Broonzy and Big Joe Williams, Red cared for other musicians by offering them a meal and a place to stay and generally easing their transition from country to city life.
Today's listener will enjoy Tampa Red's expressive vocals and perhaps be taken aback by his kazoo solos. His songwriting has stood the test of time, and any serious slide guitar student had better be familiar with Red's guitar wizardry. ~ Barry Lee Pearson

Edwin (Eddie) Grosso
reeds/flute/electric steel guitar/violin
(and many novelty instruments)
b. New York, NY, USA.
d. July 7, 1971, Mew York, NY, USA.
In the 1920s, Eddie Grosso went to Europe with the Alex Hyde Orchestra. Upon returning to the USA, he worked with "Fred Hall's Sugar Babies". In the mid-1930s, he played with Russ Morgan Orch , and he also played saxophone and clarinet with the George Olsen Orch. . One of his proudest recordings was the steel guitar solo he did with Russ Morgan's recording of "Blue Hawaii." He left Morgan in 1940 to play with the Korn Kobblers. ( Some information on the Kobblers may had seen in our Freddie Fisher and the Schnicklefritzers, entry.

The Kobblers were a novelty band that was broadcast live from 'Rogers Corner', a huge nightclub in New York city, at 50th St. and Broadway. The band also played at Jack Dempsey's Restaurant (in New York) for many years. It also had one of the first TV shows, broadcast live from the New York CBS studio in Grand Central Palace (The University of Wisconsin has a music museum that has much of the memorabilia from the Korn Kobblers). He also was with a radio band "The Rex Cole Mountaineers." It was live on Sunday mornings on New York's radio station WEAF (NBC). (Naturally, Rex Cole of Long Island City, NY. sponsored the show). Eddie Grosso played with a lot of famous musicians doing studio and commercial work (they all did it before they had their bands). Grosso, not wanting to travel, found that he could make a very good living in recording studios. As he grew older, he worked with the New York based 'society' bands of Lester Lanin , and Meyer Davis . Later, he did a lot of advertising commercials and staff work at the radio (and later TV) networks.
~The BigBands Database Plus

Fiddlin' Joe Martin 

Fiddlin' Joe Martin was a blues musician who played mandolin on Son House's, Alan Lomax inspired recording sessions in 1941. He was born in Edwards, Mississippi, and died in Walls, Mississippi.

Notable Events Occurring
On This Date Include:

"Archibald" (né: Leon T. Gross), piano
died in New Orleans, LA, USA.
Age: 60.

Sara Carter Bayes
Guitar/Autoharp/Vocals with the "Carter Family"
died in Lodi, CA, USA. Age: 79

Walter F. Bishop, songwriter
died in New York, NY, USA.
Age: 78.
Worked with Louis Jordan

Songs Recorded/Released
On This Date Include:


Piron's New Orleans Orchestra

Sissle and Blake

Bessie Smith - “Frosty Morining Blues”, (Eddie Brown)


Margaret Johnson accompanied 
by Clarence Williams' Blue Five - “Done Made a Fool Out Of Me” (Tom Delaney)

Clara Smith - “If You Only Knowed” (Porter Grainger)


Alberta Hunter
  • “Don't Want It At All”

Art Landry and His Orchestra
  • “Just Around The Corner” (May Be Sunshine For You)


Emmett Miller accompanied 
by his Georgia Crackers

Emmett Miller accompanied by his Georgia Crackers - I Ain't Gonna Give Nobody None Of This Jelly Roll
“You Lose” (Emmett Miller)

Duke Ellington and his Cotton Club Orchestra


Red Mckenzie and his Mound City Blue Blowers - “I'm Gonna Sit Right Down And Write Myself A Letter” (Joe E. Young / Fred E. Ahlert)


Red Norvo & His Orchestra - I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm


Sidney Bechet and his New Orleans Feetwarmers

  • Slippin’ And Slidin’

Sidney Bechet and his New Orleans Feetwarmers - Egyptian Fantasy
  • Coal Black Shine
  • Baby Won’t You Please Come Home


I'm Going to Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter
~Lyrics by Joe Young
~Music by Fred E. Ahlert

I'm gonna sit right down and write myself a letter
And make believe it came from you

I'm gonna write words, oh, so sweet
They're gonna knock me off my feet,
A lotta kisses on the bottom,
I'll be glad I got 'em

I'm gonna smile and say:
"Gee, I hope you're feeling better."
And close "with love" the way you .
I'm gonna sit right down and write myself a letter
And make believe it came,
(Make believe)
I'm gonna make believe it came from you.

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