Jelly Roll Morton
Ferdinand Joseph LaMothe (October 20, 1890 – July 10, 1941), known professionally as Jelly Roll Morton, was an American ragtime and jazz pianist, bandleader, and composer. Morton was jazz's first arranger, proving that a genre rooted in improvisation could retain its essential characteristics when notated. His composition "Jelly Roll Blues", published in 1915, was one of the first published jazz compositions. Morton also wrote "King Porter Stomp", "Wolverine Blues", "Black Bottom Stomp", and "I Thought I Heard Buddy Bolden Say", the last a tribute to New Orleans musicians from the turn of the 20th century.
Morton's claim to have invented jazz in 1902 was criticized. Music critic Scott Yanow wrote, "Jelly Roll Morton did himself a lot of harm posthumously by exaggerating his worth...Morton's accomplishments as an early innovator are so vast that he did not really need to stretch the truth." Gunther Schuller says of Morton's "hyperbolic assertions" that there is "no proof to the contrary" and that Morton's "considerable accomplishments in themselves provide reasonable substantiation". In 2013, Katy Martin published an article arguing that Alan Lomax's book of interviews put Morton in a negative light. Lomax disagreed that Morton was an egotist. "In being called a supreme egotist, Jelly Roll was often a victim of loose and lurid reporting. If we read the words that he himself wrote, we learn that he almost had an inferiority complex and said that he created his own style of jazz piano because 'All my fellow musicians were much faster in manipulations, I thought than I, and I did not feel as though I was in their class.' So he used a slower tempo to permit flexibility through the use of more notes, a pinch of Spanish to give a number of right seasoning, the avoidance of playing triple forte continuously, and many other points". – Quoted in John Szwed, Dr. Jazz.
Birth and Death Data: Born October 20th, 1890 (Gulfport), Died July 10th, 1941 (Los Angeles)
Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1921 - 1940
Roles Represented in DAHR: composer, piano, leader, director, vocalist, speaker, lyricist, songwriter, arranger
Notes: Some disc labels credit as Ferd. Morton.
Recordings (Results 101-125 of 165 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Victor||BS-030302||10-in.||11/22/1938||Jelly-roll blues||Bunny Berigan Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BS-030361||10-in.||12/6/1938||Milenberg joys||Don Redman Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BS-031805||10-in.||1/19/1939||Milenberg joys||Tommy Dorsey Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BS-031806||10-in.||1/19/1939||Milenberg joys||Tommy Dorsey Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Victor||BS-041360||10-in.||9/28/1939||Climax rag||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band||instrumentalist, piano, director|
|Victor||BS-041361||10-in.||9/28/1939||Don't you leave me here||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||instrumentalist, piano, director, vocalist, composer|
|Victor||BS-041362||10-in.||9/28/1939||West End blues||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band||instrumentalist, piano, director|
|Victor||BS-041363||10-in.||9/28/1939||Ballin' the jack||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||instrumentalist, piano, director, vocalist|
|Victor||BS-041456||10-in.||9/14/1939||Oh, didn't he ramble||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band, with talk||instrumentalist, piano, director|
|Victor||BS-041457||10-in.||9/14/1939||High society||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band||instrumentalist, piano, director|
|Victor||BS-041458||10-in.||9/14/1939||I thought I heard Buddy Bolden say||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||instrumentalist, piano, director, vocalist, arranger|
|Victor||BS-041459||10-in.||9/14/1939||Winin' boy blues||Jelly Roll Morton ; New Orleans Jazzmen||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||instrumentalist, piano, director, vocalist, arranger|
|Victor||BS-051224||10-in.||6/4/1940||Wild man blues||Sidney Bechet ; New Orleans Feetwarmers||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||80920||10-in.||3/30/1923||Wolverine blues||Frank Westphal Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||81302||10-in.||10/15/1923||London (Café) blues||King Oliver’s Jazz Band||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||140398||10-in.||2/26/1925||King Porter stomp||Lanin's Red Heads||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W140709||10-in.||6/22/1925||Milenberg joys||Ted Lewis and his Band||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W141693||10-in.||3/1/1926||Jelly roll blues||Fowler's Washboard Wonders||Instrumental quartet||composer|
|Columbia||W142981||10-in.||12/2/1926||Sidewalk blues||Doc Cook ; Dreamland Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||143181||10-in.||12/13/1926||Sidewalk blues||Ross Gorman ; Virginians||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145760||10-in.||3/13/1928||Ham and eggs||Johnny Dunn and his Band||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145761||10-in.||3/13/1928||Buffalo blues||Johnny Dunn and his Band||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145763||10-in.||3/14/1928||King Porter stomp||Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
|Columbia||W145954||10-in.||4/3/1928||Jungle blues||Ted Lewis and his Band||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||composer|
|Columbia||W152325||10-in.||12/9/1932||New King Porter stomp||Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra||Jazz/dance band||composer|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Morton, Jelly Roll," accessed June 23, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/101896.
Morton, Jelly Roll. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved June 23, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/101896.
"Morton, Jelly Roll." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 23 June 2021.
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