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

with Some sheet music & lyrics.

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Hues, 1 first wrote the Wolverines in Detroit in the early days/ It was just one of those things that float around in my head and one day, when I sit down at the piano, it comes out of my lingers. The first strain was for trumpet (the basis of one of these new tunes of today, Flat Foot Floogie), then the trombone strain, then I made a harmony strain for the trio, then I found that a clarinet strain would be very effective, and in the last strain I put all the instruments in the band together and made the piano sound as much like a band as possible. The tune got to be famous around Chicago and Melrose wrote and offered a $3000 advance for it. Somehow the Spikes brothers got the letter and jumped up and wrote some words and published my song as written by Spikes-Morton-Spikes. Eight there we had an argument, because they just wanted to drag me over the fence, to tell the plain truth. I decided to go on to Chicago and demand that the tune be changed over to my name, when Melrose published it. On account of all the things that had happened around L.A., Anita urged me to leave. So I packed up and caught a train and since then I never seen either Los Angeles or Anita again.
* Johnny St. Cyr remembers Jelly playing the Wolverines in New Orleans in 1906. Of course there are two sides of this story; Reb Spikes recalls Jelly's temperament with a chuclde, "He was the most jealous man ever lived. That's when he was funny, when he'd get jealous. He'd hear a piece and say, They're stealing that from me. That's mine' or 'That guy's trying to play like me.* Jelly was so jealous he once sued ASCAP. Everybody laughed at* him. That was the only time he didn't listen to us. Imagine that—suing ASCAP! Got to think of the other side of it, too. In a way Jelly was right. Colored man can't get a break in this mnsio game. White guys got it all sewed up. Closed corporation."