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Howell, Horsley and Bradford
Harry WillisHarry Wills, The Champion” is an very interesting protest song about an African American boxer who was active in the 1910s and 1920s. The undefeated Harry Wills (42-0) was slated to fight Jack Dempsey in November of 1924 for the heavyweight title of the world, but the bout was canceled denying Wills a shot at becoming the second African American to hold the title.

The chorus of this song goes something like this, “Harry though they draw the colored line you’re the champion just the same. They way they all fuss and stall is a doggone, measly shame. Everybody knows what you would do would be to bang on him till he’s dark blue. Harry though they draw the colored line you’re the champion just the same”

discography

Title Recording Date Recording Location Company
Harry Wills, The Champion
(Perry Bradford / Walton)
10-4-1926 New York, New York Columbia
14168-D
Wasn’t It Nice
(Jackson / Gus Horsley)
10-4-1926 New York, New York Columbia
14168-D

Howell, Horsley and Bradford

Artist Instrument
Perry Bradford Vocals, Piano?
Gus Horsley Vocals, Ukelele?
George Howell? Vocals

 

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