The Syncopated Times

1980-Red-Rodney-and-Ira-Sullivan

Artful and Accomplished Jazz Doublers

In the language of jazz, “doubling” means playing more than one instrument (not at the same time, c.f. Wilbur Sweatman and Rahsaan Roland Kirk). Doubling

Konter and Igloo on the expedition.

The Ukulele That Flew To The North Pole

The ukulele Martin 1K, the “Dick Konter” of the early 1900s, is perhaps the most famous ukulele in the world. It traveled on the plane

New Bix Photo w Al Gande and Johnny Hartwell

New Photo of Bix Beiderbecke Discovered

According to Bix scholar Albert Haim, Great American Songbook maven Michael Feinstein has unearthed a previously unknown photo of Bix Beiderbecke. The photo, which was

Don Neely by Matias Bombal March 2019

Don Neely’s Royal Society Jazzes On

One can’t imagine the vintage music scene today without the influence of Don Neely, the founder of the long-running Royal Society Jazz Orchestra. The California-based

long lost blues

Texas Shout #52 Common Themes

Set forth below is the fifty-second “Texas Shout” column. It first appeared in the July 1994 issue of West Coast Rag, now The Syncopated Times. I

Texas Shout #50 Record Reviewing Redux

Texas Shout #50 Record Reviewing Redux

Set forth below is the fiftieth “Texas Shout” column. The initial installment of a two-part essay, it first appeared in the May 1994 issue of

Stephanie Trick Scott Joplin 2019

From the 38th Scott Joplin Ragtime Festival

The Thursday afternoon concert featured new pieces by contemporary composers such as Vincent Johnson, Marty Mincer, John Reed-Torres, and Martin Spitznagel, the latter two playing their own works. This added a welcome variety

Billie Holiday Profiles in Jazz

Billie Holiday: Profiles in Jazz

She had a small voice that could not compare to that of Ella Fitzgerald and Sarah Vaughan. She never scatted and her improvising tended to

clarence-williams-orchestra-c-1925

Clarence Williams: Profiles in Jazz

Jazz history books often leave his name out, but Clarence Williams was a major force in the 1920s and ’30s and had quite a career;

Carousel Bar New Orleans 1960s

New Orleans’ Carousel Bar Turns 70

The Carousel Bar inside the Hotel Monteleone in the two hundred block of Royal Street is the only revolving bar in New Orleans. Installed on

Arthur Pryor and another bandmember

Arthur Pryor and the Birth of Ragtime

In 1893, twenty two year old Arthur Pryor performed his first trombone solo with Sousa’s Band. The time and place couldn’t have been better. The

Justin Ring 1903

Justin Ring’s Fifty Years on Record

Some folks are content to run things from behind the scenes, Justin Ring was one of these. Just as with Eddie King, Ring’s name appears

The Mysterious Mr. King

The Mysterious Mr. King

If you ever find yourself thumbing through discographies of Victor records from the 1920s, one name shows up more than most. You’ll see him listed

Trial by Jury WS GIlbert

Testifyin’

I recently observed that, in your youth, you know you have a dear friend if they help you move. At my age, if they show

My Right Foot - Part Two

My Right Foot – Part Two

Last night was my first gig back after foot surgery—and it was, thankfully, a fairly easy one. I delegated the herding duties to another musician

Lashley Hadlock Tiburon 1985

Barbara Lashley, A Love Affair with Song

“It was always hard to believe, for most of us who worked with Barbara, that any jazz singer could be that sweet and that uncomplicated.She

Inside the Musicians Brain

The Mind of the Jazz Musician

Jazz musicians are highly trained professionals, just as in any other skilled professional field. Whilst on stage, it may appear to the causal observer that

Sound Check Guy

The Sound Guy

Performing live cuts to the essence of what we do as jazz musicians. We love performing in intimate settings (because jazz is traditionally acoustic music)

Joplin's Landmark School

Joplin’s Landmark School

In my April 2018 column, I wrote of the accomplishments of the good people of Texarkana and the work they are doing to preserve their

Elliot Adams and Michael Chisholm at the 2017 Santa Cruz Ragtime Festival

Michael Chisholm’s Labors of Love

Making new friends and learning more about older acquaintances is one of the many rewards of being part of the on-line ragtime community. I am

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