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

with Some sheet music & lyrics.

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Hello, Central, Give Me Doctor Jazz
Melrose Brothers Music Store. . , . There was a great big banner hung out front—
and I could hear one of the Melrose boys trying to play my tune. ... He was clunking those feet so loud you could hear him clear across the street.
"Naturally, Mr. Melrose was very, very glad to see me. I sat down and started plugging Wolverine. Soon we had musicians hanging around and before long the crowds were stopping traffic."
. . . Jelly Roll made his entrance into the Melrose establish­ment so dramatic that Lester Melrose still remembered it vividly after twenty-five years. "A felow walked into our store with a big red bandana around his neck and a ten gallon cow­boy hat on his head and hollored, 'Listen, everybody, Im Jelly Roll Morton from New Orleans, the originator of jazz!" He talked for an hour without stopping about how good he was and then he sat down at the piano and proved he was every bit as good as he claimed and better. That was when Jelly Roll got his start."
Jelly Roll, on the other hand, felt this moment had "made" the Melrose Brothers.
"The Melrose boys had been trying to get into the music business for some time," said Jelly. "They had worked hard with Sugar Babe, but it had not been a success. With Wolve­rine Blues they made enough to get them started. So we were in business together for some years ... I even had to teach Melrose how to play because he couldn't do much more than plunk awTay in F sharp. . . ."
It was Jelly's idea that one should be an accomplished musician or at least a person of some talent to succeed in the music business. It continued to be his feeling that if you created the music, you should also reap the profits. No matter how often or how stubbornly life showed that these were