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Another cliffhanger?

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  • Michael Rader
    Cliffhangers seem to be the latest device in discographical research - maybe a method of attracting interest and selling copies when the suspense is resolved?
    Message 1 of 1 , Jan 24, 2011
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      Cliffhangers seem to be the latest device in discographical research - maybe a method of attracting interest and selling copies when the suspense is resolved?

      On Friday, I at long last received my copy of Chris Hillman's latest small book "Chicago Swingers", co-written with Roy Middleton and Michel Chaigne. The book, which comes with a CD illustrating the music is the highly recommended sequel to Hillman's book on New Orleans Trumpeters in 1930s Chicago which was published at the beginning of last year.

      Among the musicians covered in the book is Arnett Nelson. In the mid 1920s, Nelson was a member of Jimmy Wade's band, and Hillman concludes that he and Clifford King are the two clarinetists on Clarence Williams' coupling of "Gravier Street Blues" and "Candy Lips" which feature two clarinets and a rhythm section (Williams, Cyrus St. Clair on brass bass and probably Leroy Harris on banjo). Hillman hints that King might have made more recordings with Williams during this period. Eva Taylor said that her husband used the Wade band for recordings, but not which.

      As some of you might realise, a group of RHJ subscribers has revisited Clarence Williams personnels from about 1924 to 1930. We have now finished the first run-through among ourselves and are currently editing a draft revised discography for discussion with other collectors. This should be finished soon. I won't say too much about our findings here - another cliffhanger! - suffice to say that we come to entirely different conclusions on the identity of the two clarinet players. Admittedly, there is little exposed playing by either man - they weave around each other. But do any RHJ members agree with the idenfication of Nelson and King? If so, please give reasons, e.g. other recordings where the playing is similar.

      Michael Rader
      Karlsruhe, Germany
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