Kid Ory

Sunshine Exner Decca Recordings (1922-1947)

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This CD, one of the very few put out by the blues label Document that is actually jazz rather than blues, is a historic gap filler. Trombonist Kid Ory & His Sunshine Orchestra (also sometimes called Spikes' Seven Pods of Pepper Orchestra!) was the first black band from New Orleans to make it onto records. Its two instrumentals from 1922 ("Ory's Creole Trombone" and "Society Blues") feature some primitive but lively playing by Ory, cornetist Mutt Carey, clarinetist Dink Johnson, pianist Fred Washington, drummer Ben Borders, and the inaudible bass of Ed Garland. The same band backs a pair of dated vocals apiece by singers Roberta Dudley and Ruth Lee. Jumping to 1944, this CD has a broadcast version of "Mutt's Blues" by Kid Ory's Creole Jazz Band (with trumpeter Mutt Carey and clarinetist Jimmie Noone), a pair of obscure four-song sessions by the same group (with Joe Darensbourg taking the spot of the deceased Noone) cut for Exner and Decca and rarely reissued, and Ory's appearance with his band on Ruby Blesh's This Is Jazz radio program of August 9, 1947. The latter lasts a half-hour and features Ory, Darensbourg, trumpeter Andrew Blakeney, pianist Buster Wilson, guitarist Bud Scott, bassist Ed Garland, and drummer Minor Hall performing seven numbers including "Oh Didn't He Ramble," "Maryland, My Maryland," and "Savoy Blues." Kid Ory's mid-'50s group would actually be more powerful than this early version but the music is full of infectious spirit.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 3:13
5 3:12
8 2:43
9 2:59
10 2:47
11 2:58
12 3:19
13 2:52
14 3:17
15 2:48
16 3:05
17 4:11
18 4:39
19 2:13
20 3:59
21 3:39
22 2:35
23 3:16
24 1:36
blue highlight denotes track pick