Creole Trombone (Hardcover)
Kid Ory and the Early Years of Jazz (American Made Music)
University Press of Mississippi, 9781617036262, 250pp.
Publication Date: July 17, 2018
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Edward "Kid" Ory (1886-1973) was a trombonist, composer, recording artist, and early New Orleans jazz band leader. Creole Trombone tells his story from birth on a rural sugar cane plantation in a French-speaking, ethnically mixed family, to his emergence in New Orleans as the city's hottest band leader. The Ory band featured such future jazz stars as Louis Armstrong and King Oliver, and was widely considered New Orleans's top "hot" band. Ory's career took him from New Orleans to California, where he and his band created the first African American New Orleans jazz recordings ever made. In 1925 he moved to Chicago where he made records with Oliver, Armstrong, and Jelly Roll Morton that captured the spirit of the jazz age. His most famous composition from that period, "Muskrat Ramble," is a jazz standard. Retired from music during the Depression, he returned in the 1940s and enjoyed a reignited career.
Drawing on oral history and Ory's unpublished autobiography, Creole Trombone is a story that is told in large measure by Ory himself. The author reveals Ory's personality to the reader and shares remarkable stories of incredible innovations of the jazz pioneer. The book also features unpublished Ory compositions, photographs, and a selected discography of his most significant recordings.
About the Author
John McCusker is a New Orleans native who worked as a photojournalist for three decades at the Times-Picayune and later the New Orleans Advocate. He was part of the team that shared the 2006 Pulitzer Prize for Journalism for covering Hurricane Katrina. He is coauthor of Jockomo: The Native Roots of Mardi Gras Indians, published by University Press of Mississippi, and founder of the Cradle of Jazz Tour.