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

with Some sheet music & lyrics.

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Red Hot Pepper
writing out a complete ifteen-piece orchestration for the next night's show.
Lots of times he liked to get in the car and go out in the country, maybe look at an old house or some scenery and he'd write a song from that. He was an artist, just a genius, that's all. They're giving the credit to him now—but then they gave him arguments. They used to tell him he was old-fashioned. Now you listen on the radio and you'll hear how old-fashioned he was—all the big bands using those riffs I heard him work out in the early hours of the morning.
He used to tell his band, "You'd please me if you'd just play those little black dots—just those little black dots that I put down there. If you play them, youll please me. You don't have to make a lot of noise and ad-lib. All I want you to play is what's written. That's all I ask."
Jelly always kept the same band, but along in 1930 he began to have trouble with his men. They thought they were great and knew their instruments and how to make jazz without him. They began getting drunk and wouldn't behave.
Jelly, he was very strict about that. Any man that drank on his stand, he didn't want because of his reputation. And he told them, "If this don't stop, I'm giving up the band, because you can spoil my name and reputation by getting drunk and trying to mingle with the guests on the dance floor. Because I pay higher than any other leader—ninety and one hundred dollars a week, you think you're in demand; but I can get along without you, because 1 can always play plenty of piano and get good men for recording dates. « . . so come on, boys, and stick to those black dots."
Things kept going to the bad. Finally, one day, Garland, the bass player, missed the bus. When he arrived late to the dance, Jelly wouldn't let him on the stand, told him the contract called for fifteen pieces and he cause it to be only fourteen. So Gar­land went to the union and put Jelly up on charges for firing him without cause. Somehow Garland's word took effect and the union said Jelly couldn't use union musicians no more til