red hot jazz jazzbanner

Mezz Mezzrow (1899-1972)
Mezz Mezzrow (1899-1972)Although he was a decent clarinetist and saxophonist, Mezz Mezzrow (November 9, 1899 – August 5, 1972) is remembered today primarily for his autobiography “Really the Blues”, and for rejecting White society and embracing African-American culture, to the extent that he actually believed that he was Black. In the 1920s he was part of the White Chicago jazz scene, played with the Austin High Gang and recorded with the Jungle Kings and the Chicago Rhythm Kings.

In 1927 he moved to New York and played with Eddie Condon. In the 1930s he led a few swing-oriented dates with his integrated band The Disciples of Swing and recorded his signature tune “Really The Blues” with the Tommy Ladnier Orchestra.

The French critic Hugues Panassie put together some sessions that featured Mezzrow and others. Mezzrow had his own King Jazz label during 1945-47. In 1948 Mezzrow moved to France where he recorded with Lee Collins and others

band or session leader

Mezz Mezzrow and his Orchestra Mezz Mezzrow and his Swing Band
Mezzrow – Ladnier Quintet Mezz Mezzrow and his Band
Mezzrow – Bechet Quintet Mezzrow – Bechet Septet
Mezz Mezzrow Trio

Mezz Mezzrow (1899-1972)

Really the Blues by Mezz Mezzrow and Bernard Wolfe, Random House 1946 was a pioneering website during the "Information wants to be Free" era of the 1990s. In that spirit we are recovering the lost data from the now defunct site and sharing it with you.
Most of the music in the archive is in the form of MP3s hosted on or the French servers of where this music is all in the public domain.
Files unavailable from those sources we host ourselves. They were made from original 78 RPM records in the hands of private collectors in the 1990s who contributed to the original They were hosted as .ra files originally and we have converted them into the more modern MP3 format. They are of inferior quality to what is available commercially and are intended for reference purposes only. In some cases a Real Audio (.ra) file from will download. Don't be scared! Those files will play in many music programs, but not Windows Media Player.

Syncopated Times Radio

New Trad Jazz & Swing releases, interviews, live concerts, and a full roster of radio hosts.


Or look at our Subscription Options.