Posted by Seán Collins on 6 Sept 2013
Loud. Fat. And brassy.
That’s what they said his playing was like, the first man to earn the title of the “King” of jazz, the music he is credited with inventing.
Charles “Buddy” Bolden was born on 6 September 1877 at 319 Howard Street in New Orleans. And what he did with a cornet Uptown and in Storyville no one had done before.
We know this much. They danced until the sun came up, and at some point during the night, a member of Bolden’s band suggested they better open a window or two.
Which leads to another first in music: the use of the word funky. Bolden’s tune “Funky Butt” became a sort of theme song for his band.
Here is a recording of Jelly Roll Morton, made in 1939 or 1940, of Funky Butt/Buddy Bolden’s Blues. It was Morton who said that Bolden was “the blowingest man since Gabriel.”
No recordings of Buddy Bolden are known to exist.
Bolden was diagnosed with dementia praecox, what now would be called schizophrenia. He was institutionalized and died in 1931. He’s buried in an unmarked grave in Holt Cemetery.
National Parks Service Jazz History
Red Hot Jazz
Posted by Seán Collins on 14 Aug 2013
On this week’s show, Terence Blanchard tells Gwen about growing up in Pontchartrain Park, a neighborhood built around a golf course designed by Joseph Bartholomew. It turns out Gwen and Terence grew up a stone’s throw from one another. And they shared many experiences — including childhoods spent under the watchful gaze of other people’s mothers.
During the interview, Blanchard tells the story of his father — who worked two jobs — waking him up before leaving the house for his night job at the hospital. Father and son would watch “The Honeymooners” together.
It’s just such a sweet and wonderful story. You can imagine the kid Terence, curled up on the couch in his PJs, laughing along with his dad at Norton’s antics. We though you would get a kick out of this scene.
Piano player Tom McDermott is our guest this week.
He has a sweet style when he plays the piano: every song’s a set-piece, a memory, a love. His repertoire stretches back to the 1870s and the ragtime of his hometown of Saint Louis, to the rhythms of Brazil and their influences on the music of his adopted home of New Orleans.
Tune in to WWNO 89.9 FM Thursday at 7:00p or Saturday at Noon.
photos: Gregg Goldman
video: Jason Rhein, Elephant Quilt Productions
Terence Blanchard worked with Spike Lee on the HBO documentary “When The Levees Broke.” He also recorded his own memorial to the victims of that storm and its aftermath called “A Tale of God’s Will (A Requiem For Katrina.)”