Buddy Christian's Creole Five

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This group was one of a series of combos fronted by banjoist and guitarist Buddy Christian, who seemed to like changing the names of his groups as much as he liked forming them. Buddy Christian's Jazz…
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This group was one of a series of combos fronted by banjoist and guitarist Buddy Christian, who seemed to like changing the names of his groups as much as he liked forming them. Buddy Christian's Jazz Rippers and Buddy Christian's Four Cry Babies were some of other combo names he tinkered with during his career, revealing indecision about whether to portray his sidemen as fiends or wimps. As a solo act, Buddy Christian's Creole Five only had one studio session for Okeh, resulting in three titles, two of them identified as "stomps" and the other a blues. "Texas Mule Stomp" showed the leader's interest in clever rhythms, but whoever covered the action on drums has never been identified. Indeed, having at least one member of a particular group be acknowledged as a complete mystery is part of the Buddy Christian ethic.

The group was more active as a backing unit for other artists, and can be heard in this capacity behind giants such as Louis Armstrong and Sidney Bechet. Some of Christian's associates were also players in a variety of other studio backing bands; for example, reed player Bob Fuller was part of the chugging Choo Choo Jazzers' lineup. The Creole Five recording session took place in 1926, the same year the enterprising Christian also led groups with overlapping membership under other names at other recording sessions. Use of the name Buddy Christian's Creole Five as an accompanying unit went back to the early '20s, however.