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7667Re: Boyd Atkins - re; talking to Koester and who is Big Boy Williams?

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  • robertgreenwood_54uk
    Sep 5, 2009
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      --- In RedHotJazz@yahoogroups.com, yves francois <aprestitine@...> wrote:
      > To my friends here at RedHotJazz    
      > I have spoken to Koester this week on a couple of different issues, one was regarding Boyd Atkins. Koester feels that it was the same man from the information he had, and the career path is somewhat typical of jazz/blues musicians of that generation. If you look at the personnel of jazz and blues musicians of the 20's to 40's you will find that Oliver Alcorn (didn't he play in Celestin's band with Kelly?), Punch Miller, Lee Collins and other NOLA jazz musicians played in the Chicago blues band recording sessions

      Yves: Very many thanks for this. I don't know about Oliver Alcorn playing in Celestin's band alongside Kelly (they certainly did not record together) but Alcorn did record in 1947 with Lee Collins & Little Brother Montgomery. About 10 years before that, Punch recorded some great sides with Big Bill Broonzy. The most obvious links between NO Jazz and the Chicago blues scene at that time comes, of course, in the recordings of the Harlem Hamfats.

      One thing I would like to ask about, though, are the excursions run by the Illinois Central railroad (& others?) to Chicago & Memphis. It's said that these trips were to enable people still living in the South to visit those of their family & friends who had moved North, and that such excursions often carried a band along both to entertain passengers and to advertise the excursions themselves. It seems that Guy Kelly first visited Chicago in such a band, and that Punch Miller as a young man first heard Bunk when he (Bunk) played a similar gig. Are there any further accounts of this practice, or any advertisements for these trips in the African-American press of the time?

      Robert G.
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