About two decades ago, as a curious teenaged jazz drummer, like many listeners keen to explore the earlier forms of the music I first alighted on Louis Armstrong’s Hot Five and Hot Seven records. I started there partly because I already knew some of Louis’s later work, and because I’d read about these early records’ … Continue reading Instruments #4: The ‘Bock-A-Da-Bock’ or Hand Cymbal, 1927-9
Before I start today’s article, an admission. When I was first planning ‘Drums In The Twenties’, one concern was that I didn’t want it to become solely an outlet for thinly-disguised bragging about vintage drum gear – something by which the internet is already well served. Speaking honestly, I don’t really have that much interest … Continue reading Instruments #3: The ‘Snapper’-style Snare Drum, early 1920s
The 1920s drumming Heroes we’ve met so far, whilst all Americans, represent a quite diverse demographic. Some, such as Zutty Singleton and Baby Dodds, grew up in working-class black neighbourhoods in the South, their grandparents likely to have been born as slaves. Others, like Vic Berton, were raised in the North in comfortable, even opulent, … Continue reading Library #5: Where Are All The Heroines?
“Krupa’s drums went through us like a triple bourbon.” – Eddie Condon KEY RECORDINGS: With FRANK TESCHEMACHER / RED McKENZIE / EDDIE CONDON and GANG 1927-9 (The Chicagoans / Chicago Rhythm Kings / Jungle Kings / Condon Quartet, etc. etc.) With THELMA TERRY AND HER PLAY BOYS, 1928 With RED NICHOLS / MIFF MOLE and … Continue reading Heroes #15: Gene Krupa, 1909-1973
“Andrew Hilaire: the perfect drummer for Jelly Roll Morton. Time, taste, technique - all superb.” - Hal Smith KEY RECORDINGS: With 'DOC' COOK (COOK & HIS DREAMLAND ORCHESTRA / COOKIE'S GINGERSNAPS / COOK & HIS 14 DOCTORS OF SYNCOPATION), 1924-28 With JELLY ROLL MORTON’S RED HOT PEPPERS, 1926 At the dawn of the recording industry, … Continue reading Heroes #14: Andrew Hilaire, 1899-1935
“Moore hunched over his drums, hammering out a steady pulse...” – Ralph Berton KEY RECORDINGS: With THE WOLVERINE ORCHESTRA, 1924 With THE SIOUX CITY SIX, 1924 With THE ORIGINAL WOLVERINES, 1927-8 In 1920, young Vic Moore was just beginning to take an interest in music, particularly in the jazz which was becoming wildly popular among … Continue reading Heroes #13: Vic Moore, 1902-1976
'I got my press roll from [...] Tubby Hall'– Baby Dodds KEY RECORDINGS: [?] With DOC COOK & HIS DREAMLAND ORCHESTRA, 1924 With LOUIS ARMSTRONG & HIS ORCHESTRA, dir. CARROLL DICKERSON, 1927-31 Addressing the early life and work of Alfred ‘Tubby’ Hall, hard on the heels of having finished introducing our previous Hero – Mr. Stan King … Continue reading Heroes #12: Alfred ‘Tubby’ Hall, 1895-1945