Magazine article IAJRC Journal

New Orleans Trumpet in Chicago

Magazine article IAJRC Journal

New Orleans Trumpet in Chicago

Article excerpt

New Orleans Trumpet in Chicago By Christopher Hillman & Roy Middleton with Clive Wilson 100 pp. Pb. 2009. Cygnet Productions, PO Box 4, Tavistock, Devonshire, PL19 9YP, UK. £12.

Chris Hillman has been an IAJRC member since 1993 and a highly qualified researcher on jazz for much longer. His 1988 biography of Bunk Johnson has long been a favorite of mine.

The timing of the publication of his latest work is apposite, since our Convention is again based in Chicago this year. The book is the third in his current series, being a follow-up to Richard M. Jones - Forgotten Man of Jazz (1997) and Dave Nelson and Others (2005). Both have been reviewed in the Journal, the former in Fall, 1999 and the latter in December, 2006.

They are all in the same format : a Foreword (in this case by Claes Ringqvist, President of the Swedish Bunk Johnson Society), an informative introduction, then individual biographies of the featured musicians, each with a discography of their work. There are innumerable illustrations of musicians and their bands, and of countless record labels too.

The four selected trumpet players are Lee Collins, Punch Miller, Herb Morand and Guy Kelly. As the introduction puts it: "This volume covers the lives of four trumpet players from New Orleans who never quite made it into the forefront of jazz history\but nevertheless illuminated that history with playing which carried the Crescent City style into the middle years of the twentieth century in a modest but important way."

In all cases the book demonstrates the results of considerable research into the lives of the participants, not overlooking, in the case of Lee Collins, to credit the 1974 biography by IAJRC members Frank Gillis and John Miner, Oh, Didn't He Ramble. …

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