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

with Some sheet music & lyrics.

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Jack the Bear
pianist. Barasso was plannmg the first Negro vaudeville circuit to play the four houses in Greenville, Vicksburg, Jackson, and Memphis. He asked me to go out in the number one show. That was the reason I stayed on in Memphis for some time and happened to meet Handy, who had just arrived from his hometown—Henderson, Kentucky.
At the time I'm speaking about, in 1908, when Handy and his band was already playing Sundays at Dixie Park in Mem­phis, I requested them to play the blues and Handy said that blues couldn't be played by a band!
This is what Handy, who was introduced by Ripley on the radio as the originator of jazz, stomps, and blues, told me. I know his musical abilities because I used to play in his band from time to time. In 1908, Handy didn't know anything about the blues and he doesn't know anything about jazz and stomps to this day. One of my proteges, Freddie Keppard, the trumpet king of all times, came to Memphis on an excursion from New Orleans. I had him and his band play my New Orleans Blues and that was the first time Memphis heard the blues by an orchestra. So much for Mister Handy.