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In Tune -- by Bill Fuller
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Desert Isle Recordings                           The 1920's, 1930's

The “In Tune” column is dedicated to factual research and reportage of what we
know about the origins of the tunes that make up the jazz canon seasoned with
anecdotal bits that add some flavor. However, I thought it might be interesting to
see what kind of “hornets nest” I might stir up by doing a little editorializing. So,
here, in recording date order, is my list of records from the 1920’s that I’d just
have to have with me if I were stranded on a desert island. Feel free to disagree.
In fact I encourage you to share your lists with me and maybe we can print some
of them in this column. Remember what Cicero said: De gustibus non
disputandum est. (In matters of taste there can be no arguments).

Black Bottom Stomp (11/10/26) – Red & Miff’s Stompers: Red Nichols (c); Miff
Mole (tb); Jimmy Dorsey (cl); Arthur Schutt (p); Vic Berton (d). [from “The Jazz
Trumpet Vol I. – Prestige LP – P-24111].

Singin’ the Blues (2/4/27) – Bix Beiderbecke(c); Miff Mole (tb.); Jimmy Dorsey
(cl.); Doc Ryker (as); Frank Trumbauer(C-mel.); Itzy Riskin (p); Eddie Lang (gt);
Chauncey Morehouse (d). [from “The Bix Beiderbecke Story Vol II.-Columbia LP –

Weary Blues  (4/22/27) – Johnny Dodds’ Blackbottom Stompers: Louis
Armstrong (c); Gerald Reeves (tb); Johnny Dodds (cl); Barney Bigard (ts); Earl
Hines (p); Bud Scott (bj); Baby Dodds (d). [from “Young Louis, the Sideman”
Decca LP – DL-9233].

I’ve Found a New Baby (4/6/28) – The Chicago Rhythm Kings: Mugsy Spanier
(c); Frank Teschemacher (cl.); Mezz Mezzrow (ts); Joe Sullivan (p); Eddie Condon
(bj); Jim Lanigan (tuba); Gene Krupa (d). [from “The Chicagoans” – Decca LP –DL

Beau Koo Jack  (12/5/28) – Louis Armstrong and His Savoy Ballroom Five: Louis
Armstrong (tp); Fred Robinson (tb); Earl Hines (p); Dave Wilborn (bj); Zutty
Singleton (d). [from “Louis Armstrong Vol IV – Columbia LP – CJ-45142].

Swing Out (7/17/29) – The Red Allen Orchestra: Henry “Red” Allen (c); J.C.
Higgenbotham (tb.); Albert Nicholas (cl, as); Charles Holmes (cl, as, ss); Teddy
Hill (cl,ts,bar.); Luis Russell (p); Will Johnson (bj/gt); Pops Foster (b); Paul
Barbarin (d). [from “RCA Victor Encyclopedia of Recorded Jazz – Album 5 – 10”
LP – Jazz Club of America- LEJ-5].

Sau Sha Stomp  (3/1/29) – Jabbo Smith and His Rhythm Aces: Jabbo Smith (tp);
Willard Brown (as); Cassino Simpson (p); Ikey Robinson (bj); Lawson Buford
(tuba). [from “Jabbo Smith – Vol I” – Melodeon LP – MLP-7326].

Boston Skuffle  (8/8/29) – Jabbo Smith and His Rhythm Aces: Jabbo Smith (tp);
Omer Simeon (ts); Earl Frazer (p); Ikey Robinson (bj); Lawson Buford (tuba). [from
“Jabbo Smith – Vol II” – Melodeon LP – MLP – 7327].

Certainly, if space allowed, there could be many more . . .

Desert Island” List (the 30’s)

I had so much fun doing the “Desert Isle List” for the 1920’s last month that I
thought I’d do it one more time ( for the 1930’s) before giving it a rest for awhile
and maybe coming back and doing a list for the 1940’s and 50’s some time in the
future. So here, in order of recording dates, are the records from the 1930’s that I’d
just have to have with me if I was stranded on a desert island – with electricity
and a record player. Does anybody say “record player” anymore?

Maple Leaf Rag-(9/15/32) – Sidney Bechet (ss); Tommy Ladnier (tp); Teddy
Nixon (tb); Hank Duncan (p); Wilson Myers (b); Morris Morand (d). [from “Sidney
Bechet, Master Musician” – Bluebird LP – AXM2-5516].

Keep Smilin’ at Trouble- (11/2/35) – Bunny Berigan (tp); Bud Freeman (ts);
Claude Thornhill (p); Eddie Condon (gt); Grachan Moncur (b); Cozy Cole (d).
[from “Swing Classics: Bunny Berigan” – Prestige LP – 7646].

Why Do I Lie to Myself About You – (6/5/36) – Fats Waller and His Rhythm –
Thomas “Fats” Waller (p,v); Herman Autry (tp); Gene Cedric (cl, ts); Al Casey
(gt); Charles Turner (b); Arnold Boling (d). [from “The Complete Fats Waller –Vol
IV” – Bluebird LP – 5905-I-RB].

Carry Me Back to Old Virginny- (4/7/37) – Louis Armstrong with The Mills
Brothers: Louis Armstrong (tp,v); Harry Mills (v & “tp”); Donald Mills and
Herberts Mills (v, & “saxophone”); John Mills Sr. (gt & “b”). [from “Louis
Armstrong #6: Satchmo’s Collectors Items” – MCA LP – MCA-1322].

The Sheik of Araby- (4/29/37) – Benny Goodman Quartet: Benny Goodman (cl);
Teddy Wilson (p); Lionel Hampton (vib); Gene Krupa (d). [from “Benny Goodman
Trio and Quartet- Vol II” – CBS (Holland) LP – 63086].

Meet Me Tonight in Dreamland- (4/30/38) – Eddie Condon and His Windy City
Seven: Bobby Hacket (c); Jack Teagarden (tb); Pee Wee Russell (cl); Bud Freeman
(ts); Jess Stacy (p); Eddie Condon (gt); Artie Shapiro (b); George Wettling (d).
[from “The Commodore Years” – Atlantic LP – SD2-309].

Dinah – (8/31/38) – Pee Wee Russell’s Rhythmakers: Max Kaminsky (tp); Dicky
Wells (tb); Pee Wee Russell (cl); Al Gold (ts);  James P. Johnson (p); Freddy Green
(gt); Wellman Braud (b); Zutty Singleton (d). [from “The Jazz Trumpets –Vol I –
Prestige LP –P-24111].

Romping- (1/13/39) – Frankie Newton and His Orchestra: Frankie Newton (tp);
Mezz Mezzrow (cl); Pete Brown (as); James P. Johnson (p); Al Casey (gt);, John
Kirby (b); Cozy Cole (d). [from “Swing – Vol I” – Victor LP – LPV-578].

Mournin’ Blues- (2/6/39) Bob Crosby’s Bobcats: Billy Butterfied(tp); Warren
Smith (tb); Irving Fazola (cl); Eddie Miller(ts); Bob Zurke(p); Nappy Lamare (gt);
Bob Haggart (b); Ray Bauduc(d). [from “Bob Crosby’s Bobcats” – Decca LP – DL-

Certainly, if space allowed, there could be many more . . .
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