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Re: [RedHotJazz] Arnett Nelson

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  • Bob Eagle
    Forget my last post. I was looking for a younger man, but Howard pointed us in the right direction. Arnett was born on 8 March 1892, at Ellisville, MS,
    Message 1 of 38 , Apr 3 4:39 PM
      Forget my last post. I was looking for a younger man, but Howard pointed us in the right direction.

      Arnett was born on 8 March 1892, at Ellisville, MS, according to his 1917 draft card, in which he is described as "musician (traveling)".

      As late as 1917, he was residing at Laurel, MS (quite near Ellisville) and not in Chicago. He was of medium height and weight. He had "light brown" eyes, which may be consistent with creole blood.

      The birth date is confirmed - all we need is to decide the year!

      Bob

      Howard Rye <howard@...> wrote:
      Arnett Nelson was the subject of intensive research by the late Ernest
      Virgo, who wrote the notes to the Magpie LP. Unfortunately he developed a
      tendency to hear and insist that every unknown clarinettist on a record that
      Arnett might possibly have been on was in fact Arnett. This state of affairs
      both discouraged others from participating in the research and prevented its
      publication!

      Later (untranslated) editions of PanassiƩ's Dictionary say that Arnett was
      born in Mississippi on 8 March 1890 and died in Chicago on 14 March 1959.
      That would make him 26 when he went to Chicago. Chris Hillman & Mike Tovey
      in Storyville 128 give the same birth date and specify "probably near
      Gulfport". In their view "The Wade recordings show him to have been a very
      fine clarinettist in the creole style." Hillman and Tovey conclude that he
      is King Mutt of King Mutt and His Tennessee Thumpers (Gennett 1928) which
      would make this his first session as a leader, but though he is undoubtedly
      present their argument for his leadership doesn't convince me. (Seems much
      more likely to me this was a Melrose pick-up date which was given a name
      dreamed up at or after the session under the influence of something or other
      by a fan of the Mutt & Jeff cartoon series.)

      PanassiƩ (1987 edition) says "After 1940 his activity was reduced by his
      poor stste of health but he seems to have always worked as a musician in
      Chicago." This is a delicate way of noting that Arnett had a major drink
      problem.

      on 3/4/08 18:14, David Brown at johnhaleysims@... wrote:

      Just listening my sole Arnett, a 1978 Magpie LP. This is a collection of
      blues accompaniments. Only ever two sides under his name. Also on the Jimmy
      Wades. A very interesting player. Reportedly from N.O. which he left for
      Chicago in 1916 at a tender age but how tender I cannot find. There is very
      little classic N.O. creole in his style which oververges sometimes on hokum.
      The identification of him is aural and style is very reminiscent at times of
      Odell Rand, who was working in a very similar milieu. Some similarities with
      Dodds but if influence it may have been absorbed in Chicago rather than N.O.

      The only information on him is -- or was in 1978 -- from the Lee Collins
      'Oh Didn't He Ramble'. Also a perceptive entry in 'Dictionaire Du Jazz'.
      Not in Chilton nor Grove.

      Do we now know anymore ?

      Dave

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

      Howard Rye, 20 Coppermill Lane, London, England, E17 7HB
      howard@...
      Tel/FAX: +44 20 8521 1098

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    • David Weiner
      ... Don t forget, Gerry, that many bands had tuba and string bass side by side at the same time - this is readily apparent in many of the Vitaphone shorts of
      Message 38 of 38 , Jul 26, 2010
        >
        > So now limiting the discussion to "big band/large ensemble" and avoiding
        > string-bands, quartets/quintets: I had always assume that this
        > setting--for recordings--generally had tuba. As such I was looking for who
        > began using string bass as a replacement for tuba, if it concentrated in
        > one or a few individual groups.
        >
        > .
        >
        > -- Gerry
        >
        >
        Don't forget, Gerry, that many bands had tuba and string bass side by side
        at the same time - this is readily apparent in many of the Vitaphone shorts
        of 1927-30 - often, a band also had a banjoist and a guitarist playing
        simultaneously, too. There are numerous records - like Gus Arnheim's "One
        More Time," from 1931, where tuba is in use on the first half of the disc,
        with a switchover to string bass for the "hot" final choruses to add an
        extra measure of excitement to the performance.

        Dave Weiner
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