Jelly Roll Morton, Inventor Of Jazz, Online Book by Alan Lomax

with Some sheet music & lyrics.

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The Boys in the Bands
this is a sin and a little bit of that is a sin—they'd have died if they'd heard of him being in the District.
"See, all kind of people come through those joints—long-shoremens, roustabouts, cowboys, Yankees, and every kind of woman in the world. I seen plenty of knife-and-pistol play. Killings was a common affair, and in 1900 1 seen a mass Mling —that Robert Charles riot. 1 remember that night too well. It cause me to dig down deeper in my music more so yet.. . .
"Robert Charles got away, but they had his friend in the parish prison. When the jailer refuse to give him up to the mob, the mob said they was going down round 25 s and kill afl the Negroes.
"So a woman came in 25's and told us, 'If I was you, Yd knock off tonight!' Lord, I've wished many times i had gone home to warn my people, like I wanted to, but Payton, he was an unbeliever. He told me, 'Aah, we never had nothing like that in New Orleans yet and it won t happen tonight.' Then he stomped off the next tune and we kept playing.
"When they came—I reckon it was an hour later—we didn't know how they got there. We heard shooting. Me, I was sitting at the inside end of the bandstand, playing bass. Al them boys flung themselves on me in gitting away from the door and out toward the back. The bass was bust to kindling and I sailed clear across the back of the room, so many of them hit me so hard all at once.
"We made it out the window of the gambling house into the alley in back but, man, that alley was already loaded with folks. Me and Bolden and Gipson was together. We thought Josie Arlington might let us through her house into Basin Street. When she saw who we was, she slammed the door, locked it, and start to screaming. So we cut on through the lot next door, made it over the fence and on down Basin. Not one of us had a shirt on him by then and Bolden had left his watch hanging on the wall near the bandstand. We might have been assassinated, but we was lucky enough to get to a friend's house. We locked ourselves in and barred the doors.