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James Weldon Johnson: A Life Full of Hope

In recent years, the song “Lift Every Voice and Sing” has reentered the public consciousness. Depending on who is telling the story, the work is

Warner Brothers’ ‘Irish Bard’

As Summer approaches, we celebrate Irish Month my thoughts turn to my grandfather, M.K. “Moe” Jerome, whom those Warner Brothers called “The Irish Bard.” Moe


Texas Shouts #19-21: Chicago Style Dixieland

Set forth below are the combined 19th-21st “Texas Shout” columns. This three-part essay appeared in the July, August, and September 1991 issues of the West Coast

Texas Shouts #17 & #18 Favorite Musicians

Set forth below are the Seventeenth and Eighteenth “Texas Shout” columns. They first appeared in the May and June 1991 issues of the West Coast Rag,

A Brief Stop in NOLA

Prior to the Templeton Ragtime Festival in late February, I spent a few days in New Orleans. As my regular readers know, when I travel

Louis and Bria in NYC

On a rainy Friday, December 1, I made my second trip to the Big Apple in just under two months. My main purpose was to

Humphrey Lyttelton: Profiles in Jazz

In music history, it ranked with Igor Stravinsky’s debut of The Rite Of Spring in 1913 and Bob Dylan “going electric” at the 1965 Newport

Marching into an Arizona Spring…

After exciting trips to New Orleans and San Diego, the schedules for March included more local attention to the incredible talent we have right here

From the 35th San Diego Jazz Party

We attended the 35th Anniversary of the San Diego Jazz Party this past February and with beautiful weather at last! The Hilton Del Mar is

Cold Winds Outside, Hot Jazz Inside!

When we hit New Orleans this past January it was 32 degrees and very windy! The Mississippi encourages bitter winds through the Quarter and creates

Frank and John: The Musical Banta Brothers

In the world of 19th century theater, there were many siblings who made their success by performing together. As the phonograph became a legitimate medium

The Lost Hook Tapes

It really is a waiting game based on luck and endurance. I am banking on the idea that if you stick to your artistic career

Birthday Blues

“Everything happens for the best” Does it really? In a continuation of last month’s theme of reality being how we perceive it, perhaps the better

Randi Cee

Reality is a Cruel Mistress

If I was a rich man, I would have a right proper mid life crisis. I suppose that is a very sexist idea that you

The Elusive Legacy of Bill Erickson 1929-1967

“Erickson, usually erroneously labelled a Dixieland jazzman, was in every way a comprehensive modern musician, performer and composer whose interests ranged from the blues to

Ain’t No Wrong Notes in Jazz

It is easy to be impressed by jazz musicians… if you are not one yourself. We are, after all, an impressive bunch. And I know

Bad Moon Rising

Jazz musicians are a mischievous bunch. I doubt that’s a surprise to any of you, as the history books are filled with stories of pranks

The New Syllabus

There’s been a lot made in the news in recent times about systemic issues in our education system. As I understand it, there seems to

(Mis)Remembering the 1974 Joplin Fest

As I blow the dust off of the fifty-year-old files of Joplin Ragtime Festival documents, it isn’t just the dust causing my eyes to tear.

Polish jazzman Antoni Krupa has died

Antoni Krupa (March 23rd, 1945 – March 17th, 2024) The Polish guitarist/banjoist and harmonica player was a member of the Jazz Band Ball Orchestra and

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