A somewhat shadowy figure in jazz history, Zue Robertson was barely documented and stories about his talents have to remain unverified. His first instrument was the piano, but Robertson began concentrating on trombone when he was 13. He picked up experience playing in circus bands and for traveling revues (including touring with the Kit Carson Wild West Show), was a fixture in early New Orleans and worked with the Olympia Band, Manuel Perez, Richard M. Jones and John Robichaux, among others. After moving to Chicago in 1917, Robertson played with Jelly Roll Morton, King Oliver (1924), W.C. Handy (with whom he toured) and Dave Peyton. His only recordings were two poorly recorded titles with Morton in 1923 and a pair of fine songs ("Midnight Mama" and Mr. Jelly Lord") with the Levee Serenaders in 1928, a band also directed by Morton. Robertson moved to New York in 1929 and soon gave up playing trombone to stick to piano and organ. A few years later he moved to Los Angeles, where he lived and played in obscurity for the remainder of his life.
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