Merseysippi Jazz Band

April 20, 2017
By ColGould

(Winners of this BBC Jazz history Award 2003)

Liver Building by John Bythell

Ken Baldwin, president person in the band on 14th February 1949, died in the sleep at 10.45a.m. on 28th February, 2006.
Dave Rigby happens to be the resident guitar/banjo player using musical organization

John Lawrence took the choice to retire from playing in January 2007. He died on 2nd October 2007

Dave Dixson (Reeds) replaced Don Lydiatt in January 2009. Don died in his rest on 30th November 2011

Vintage Merseysippi Jazz Band a CD released last year of tracking made between 1955-57

**

In the second part of 1948, when you look at the north-west of The united kingdomt, in Liverpool, several artists got by themselves collectively and formed a band called 'The Wallasey Rhythm Kings'. After that only bit more than schoolboys, Ken Baldwin (banjo), Frank Robinson (piano), Wally Fisher (trumpet), Dennis Gracey (trombone), Pat Evans (aka Evan Patrick) (clarinet), Dick Goodwin (bass) and Ken Metcalfe (drums) launched by themselves upon an unsuspecting world on St valentine's, Monday 14 February, 1949, in the Grosvenor Ballroom, Wallasey.

Bassist Dick Goodwin had been the power when you look at the band in which he supplied the impetus that led to the musical organization marketing itself at 'Merseyside's First Jazz Band Ball.' Admission was three shillings (15p), refreshments could be purchased "at modest rates" and dance had been from 7.30 pm to 11.30 pm. The Evening lead to a net profit of £2. 1s. 9d.

Flushed with this specific fiscal success, they believed on. It had been Frank Robinson just who, mindful associated with the origins of the music, ended up being brilliantly motivated to suggest that the band be re-named 'The Merseysippi Jazz Band.' This is immediately concurred and also the title features remained solidly in position ever since, only to be affectionately and often abbreviated to 'The Merseys' or 'The MJB.' Banjoist Ken Baldwin additionally made a lasting share towards reputation for the band. Their abiding practice of handling nearly everybody as 'Nob' has actually caught like glue and fifty many years the everyday eavesdropper to band conversations is confused by everyone calling everyone else 'Nob' - and fact that individuals in the musical organization therefore resolved, instinctively respond to anyone who is talking to all of them specifically.

The band was encouraged by the post-war revivalist action in Britain. But had been the Yerba Buena Jazz Band, a two-horn Watters/Scobey-led band which was in fact created in San Francisco when you look at the United states western Coast revivalist action to re-create the King Oliver/Louis Armstrong noise, that impacted the sort of songs which they played.

Around September 1949, The Wallasey Chronicle reported: Another successful evening with the Merseysippi Jazz Band at this juncture becoming accompanied by a customer from London, George Melly, which amazed everybody together with effective singing of some common blues including "Frankie and Johnny".' By now Don Lydiatt (clarinet), had replaced Evan Patrick, and never very long afterward Frank Parr (trombone) and John Lawrence (cornet) took the locations of Dennis Gracey and Wally Fisher. Frank and John had both already been avid followers of band, and having been given the chance to get into the act had both start mastering their particular tools - from scratch- with remarkable success. Frank Parr had joined the band whilst continuing his job with Lancashire Cricket Club, and then he remained aided by the Merseys for six years before joining the Mick Mulligan Band as a complete- time professional in 1956. George Melly's superb book "Owning Up" which, with chilling precision, recounts a jazzer's existence when you look at the fifties and sixties, describes Frank Parr to perfection. Like numerous other enduring jazzmen of that period, both George and Frank continue to be good friends of this band.

After that, without warning, emerged the important factor that profoundly impacted the band. Aided by the advantage of hindsight, it actually formed its fate. It absolutely was a London trumpet player called Peter Daniels. Pete had heard the band's very first BBC broadcast along with recorded it. He had been so impressed which he travelled north to Liverpool and launched himself and his acetates - toward musical organization. The end result had been remarkable. Every person liked Pete, Pete liked every person - musically and socially - therefore he left London and relocated to live on Merseyside. The MJB had its line-up generate the two-horn noise which has been its trademark ever since.

During the early 1950, the demand from Liverpool Jazz Club to use the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall as a jazz club ended up being turned down by the city's Finance and General needs Committee 'on the grounds regarding the unsuitability associated with the music is played.' But Humphrey Lyttelton nonetheless ventured north on 5 February, using the Merseys at the Tivoli Theatre in New Brighton. Presumably the Tivoli's administration was somewhat even more alert to the possibility marketplace than Liverpool's chosen directors throughout the lake which inaugural concert led to many visitor visits from bands of day.

Sooner rather than later but Liverpool became the focal point of jazz on Merseyside. On 2 April, 1950, Kenro Productions presented a 'event of Jazz' on Stadium. The MJB played alongside Ralph Sharon, the Terry Walsh Bop Group, Kathy Stobart's New Music, Tommy Smith's Swing Group, Freddy Randall's Band and, starting a long association both on-stage and tilting against the closest bar that endures to this day, Mick Mulligan along with his Magnolia Jazz Band.

During next many years, grimly determined to remain semi-professional, the MJB established by themselves at Picton Hall in Liverpool. They welcomed and backed Big Bill Broonzy, George Melly, Neva Raphaello and Beryl Bryden and enjoyed every musical organization associated with the day, including Humphrey Lyttelton, Alex Welsh, the Yorkshire Jazz Band, the Saints Jazz Band, Freddy Randall, Mick Mulligan, Sid Phillips, Graeme Bell along with his Australian Jazz Band, the Crane River Jazz Band, the Hedley Ward Trio, Chris Barber, Dickie Hawdon, Sandy Brown, Ken Rattenbury, Terry Lightfoot, Eric Silk, Mike Daniels, the Temperance Seven, Cy Laurie, Teddy Foster, the Squadronaires, Ken Colyer, Bobby Mickleburgh, the Christie Brothers Stompers and Ray Ellington.

Every one of these engagements led up to 'the great time in 1956' as soon as the band shared the phase with Louis Armstrong. Some months before, John Lawrence, Frank Parr and Nob Baldwin had travelled collectively to Paris to know Louis on their European tour never ever suspecting that in a short time they might enjoy the ultimate connection with revealing the balance with all the great guy himself at his Liverpool Stadium concert. To meet, speak with and fool around with Louis Armstrong ended up being a personal experience that couple of British artists have actually ever enjoyed.

Source: www.jazznorthwest.co.uk
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