Hidden History of Louisiana's Jazz Age

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New Orleans’s early jazz greats like Louis Armstrong, Jelly Roll Morton, Kid Ory and Buddy Bolden reshaped the course of music history. But there was more to Louisiana’s Jazz Age than musical innovation. It was also an age of murder, lust, adventure and the irresistibly offbeat. Clarinetist Joe Darensbourg of Baton Rouge ran away and joined the circus three times before the age of twenty. The Martel Band of Opelousas witnessed a legal public hanging of a convicted serial murderer in 1923. Acadia Parish trumpeter Evan Thomas could have been a rival to Satchmo but was cut down on the bandstand in the Promised Land neighborhood of Rayne. Author Sam Irwin unearths the odd and quirky in these fascinating stories from the adolescent years of America’s music.
ISBN: 9781467153423
Format: Paperback
Publisher: The History Press
State: Louisiana
Images: 37
Pages: 176
Dimensions: 6 (w) x 9 (h)
Sam Irwin is the trumpet bandleader of the Florida Street Blowhards, a Baton Rouge–based traditional jazz band. A public relations professional and freelance journalist, Irwin has been writing about Louisiana for the last two decades. He grew up in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, the Crawfish Capital of the World, and wrote about that experience in Louisiana Crawfish: A Succulent History of the Cajun Crustacean in 2014. He followed that book up with It Happens in Louisiana: Peculiar Tales, Traditions and Recipes from the Bayou in 2015. He is a former music major at the University of Louisiana–Lafayette.
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