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Back to Vol.1 No.6 May 1950

Jazz Illustrated Vol.1 No.6 May 1950 0007

Jazz Illustrated Vol.1 No.6 May 1950 0007

Pages 10 and 11 of Jazz Illustrated journal, number 6, volume 1, May 1950. Both pages recount the 1919 performance of the Original Dixieland Jazzband, at Hammersmith Palais, with an anniversary concert on March 6th, 1950.

Image Details

Catalogue Reference Number
Creator Herbert Wilcox [ed], Tom Edwards, G. Mclean, Richard Johnston
Date Made May 1950
Item Format Journal
Title or Caption New Orleans To Hammersmith

This text has been generated by computer from the image and may contain typographical and/or grammatical errors.

A PAR 1 from cne appearance at tin London Hipjodrorre, in the revue, a. Joybells, —Georre Robey persuaded producer Albert De Courville to drop them after one performance- the debut of the original Dixieland Jazz Band in this country, was made at the London Palladium on Easter Monday, 1919, Out rageously noisy and entirely new in instrumentation, one had the very strong impression that the audience did not know what to make of this extraordinary combination.

The audience was a music hall crowd —certainly not composed of jazz enthusiasts. If they existed at all in those days. Ragtime,’ the Pm Pan Alley sort, was the nearest approach we had experienced There had been ’ jazz drummers (giving rise to the drum advertisements, iazz sets ") in the small combinations which, usually included violin and banjo, sometimes a trombone, but the line-up of the O.D.J.B. was an innovation.

After two weeks at the Palladium, they moved on to Marten s Club, now the Embassy. It was here that British pianist. Billy Jones, leading his own group of two banjos, drums and himself on the piano, replaced J. Russell Robinson, who returned to America. The band later moved to Rector's Club, in Tottenham Court Road, owned by Mitchell and Booker, w ho opened the first Palais at Hammersmith with the O.D.J.B. On the opening night the band scored a huge success with the dancers, but there was little room to dance the One-Step or Fox-Trot. Opposite the O.D.J.B. was Billy Arnold s Novelty Band and they played alternate numbers—not half-hour sessions. Each band was encased in glass and situated on a low platform at either end of the floor. No mikes ! The O.D.J.B would have scorned them, I m sure. Almost without exception the crowd was in evening dress—admission was by ticket only—Hermione Baddeley, the actress, made an opening speech—and Harry Pilcer and partner gave an exhibition of ballroom dancing. It was a memorable occasion and certainly worthy of the anniversary celebration on March 6th this year which helped to bring back happy

I he Creators of Ju// was printed on their lettc-i headings and bills, and similar vocal claims were made L. leader La Rocca ; the claim is disputable, but the O.D.J.B. were the first to the traditional style on record an d the fir-t to bring the music to this country. On Monday March 6th. the N.F.J.O. sponsored a Jazz Band Ball , held at tL Hammersmith Palais to commemorate this occasion. An astonishing crowd of over 3,000enthusiasts packed the hall that memorable evening and acclaimed the five bands playing in the traditional style

Pictured below are Mick M ulllgan s Magnolia Jazzmen, who were a great success at the Ball. Like most of the younger revival bands, their style and repertoire is drawn from the coloured performers, hut there is a strong musical link between the playing of the O.D.J.B. and jazz hands throughout the country. 1 he instrumentation and collective improv isation is the same, even it the Negro style is the local tvto s archtv pi


Tom Edwards