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View Full Version : Off Topic: HTOTW#12, Frank Trumbauer and his Orchestra



Terry Porritt
26-03-2004, 09:49 PM
After Bix Beiderbecke died in August 1931, jazz,as we knew it, black or white, didnt come to an end, well not quite :).
However by 1935 it had changed so much as to be barely recognisable compared to the truly innovative hot years of the mid to late 1920s and the very early 30s.

A big band loud noise era was coming along with less free rein for individual soloists.
Very soon we would be into incomprehensible Be-Bop, and then the laid back music of the Miles Davis 'genre' ie COOL which does/did NOT in those days or in my current vocabulary, have its present day meaning of clever/good etc.

COOL, musically, did and still does mean to people of my generation, dispassionate/passionless, laid back, low key, etc. ie. NOT HOT, as in the way Jelly Roll Morton's Red Hot Peppers would be described as hot. Current usage would call Jelly Roll Morton "cool" if someone likes it. A crazy mixed up world :D.

Be that as it may, a few tried to keep alive the spark that had been ignited by Bix, and foremost was his old pal Frankie "Tram" Trumbauer with a handful of Bix admirers like Andy Secrest and Manny Klein.

After Bix was no longer playing with "Tram", Andy Secrest took over the lead cornet role for a while, and it was incumbent on Tram to provide the musical lead much more prominently than he had when playing with Bix.

Let's hear Tram on C-Melody sax and his Orchestra playing one of my favorites composed by Hoagy Carmichael "Gorgia On My Mind" (http://www.redhotjazz.com/songs/tram/Georgia.ram) from September 1931, recorded just over a month after Bix died.

Now for a flavour of Fats Waller "Honey Suckle Rose" (http://www.redhotjazz.com/songs/tram/HoneysuckleRose2.ram) with Tram soloing on c-melody sax.

It is difficult to escape from Bing Crosby in the 1930s :), here he is with the Frank Trumbauer Orchestra in 1932 with "Love Me tonight" (http://www.redhotjazz.com/songs/tram/lovemetonight.ram). Maybe Bing was not to everyones liking, but it is easy to see why he climbed the ladder to fame and fortune.

Here is a tune composed by Frankie Trumbauer, " Bass Drum Dan" (http://www.redhotjazz.com/songs/tram/bassdrumdan2.ram), with Tram on sax and Andy Secrest playing Bix.

Now to finish this HTOTW lets hear Tram, this time I think on alto sax, not C-melody, in 1932 showing off with "Between The Devil And The Deep Blue Sea" (http://www.redhotjazz.com/songs/tram/betweenthedevil.ram).

Next HTOTW we will sort out some hot British bands of the !920s and 30s. Good listening :).