Thomas Morris (August 30, 1897 – 1945) was an American jazz cornetist. Jazz critic Scott Yanow noted that Morris's primitive style was "an excellent example of how New York brass players sounded before the rise of Louis Armstrong."
Morris was born in New York City. His many recordings include dates with Clarence Williams, Charlie Johnson, Fats Waller and many jazz and blues singers, including Mamie Smith, Eva Taylor and Sippie Wallace. His most notable dates were with his band, the Seven Hot Babies, producing eight songs in 1923 and ten in 1926. For a time, Morris served as a porter at Grand Central Terminal. In the last few years of his life, he was associated with Father Divine's strict religious movement, changing his name to Brother Pierre. Sidney Bechet recalled an encounter with Morris in a radio interview with Wynne Paris, stating, "I happened to be walking down 132nd Street near Seventh Avenue when I saw Thomas Morris, and I was tickled to death to see him. I say, 'Hello Thomas.' He said, 'Not no more. I'm St. Peter.' I said, 'You might be St. Peter to Father Divine, but you're Thomas Morris to me.'"
Morris died in 1945 in California. He was the uncle of pianist Marlowe Morris.
Birth and Death Data: Born 1898, Died 1945 (California)
Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1923 - 1927
Roles Represented in DAHR: cornet, leader, composer, director, speaker, songwriter
Recordings (Results 1-25 of 68 records)
|Company||Matrix No.||Size||First Recording Date||Title||Primary Performer||Description||Role||Audio|
|Victor||BVE-35762||10-in.||7/13/1926||Lazy drag||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, composer, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-35763||10-in.||7/13/1926||Jackass blues||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-35764||10-in.||7/13/1926||Charleston stampede||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, composer, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36047||10-in.||8/17/1926||Georgia grind||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo||leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36048||10-in.||8/17/1926||Ham gravy||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||composer, leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36069||10-in.||8/27/1926||Goin' crazy with the blues||Mamie Smith||Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble||instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36071||10-in.||8/27/1926||Who's dis heah stranger||Thomas Morris Orchestra||Jazz/dance band, with dialogue||instrumentalist, cornet, leader, speaker|
|Victor||BVE-36081||10-in.||8/31/1926||What have you done to make me feel this way||Mamie Smith||Female vocal solo, with jazz/dance ensemble||instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36846||10-in.||10/20/1926||When a 'gator holler, folks say it's a sign of rain||Margaret Johnson||Female vocal solo, with instrumental trio||instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36847||10-in.||10/20/1926||Graysom Street blues||Margaret Johnson||Female vocal solo, with instrumental trio||instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36895||10-in.||11/2/1926||My baby doesn't squawk||New Orleans Blue Five||Jazz/dance band||composer, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36896||10-in.||11/2/1926||The king of the Zulus||New Orleans Blue Five||Jazz/dance band||composer, speaker, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36897||10-in.||11/2/1926||South Rampart Street blues||New Orleans Blue Five||Jazz/dance band||instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36925||10-in.||11/12/1926||Blues from the Everglades||Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36926||10-in.||11/12/1926||P. D. Q. blues||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36958||10-in.||11/23/1926||I got a mule to ride||Edna Winston||Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble||composer, director|
|Victor||BVE-36959||10-in.||11/23/1926||Mamma's gonna drop your curtain||Edna Winston||Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble||director|
|Victor||BVE-36960||10-in.||11/23/1926||Pail in my hand||Edna Winston||Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble||director|
|Victor||BVE-36961||10-in.||11/23/1926||Peepin' Jim||Edna Winston||Female vocal solo, with instrumental ensemble||director|
|Victor||BVE-36962||10-in.||11/24/1926||The mess||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, composer, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-36963||10-in.||11/24/1926||The chinch||Thomas Morris ; Morris' Hot Babies||Jazz/dance band||leader, instrumentalist, cornet|
|Victor||BVE-38050||10-in.||5/20/1927||Fats Waller stomp||Morris' Hot Babies ; Fats Waller||Jazz/dance ensemble||instrumentalist, cornet, leader|
|Victor||BVE-38051||10-in.||5/20/1927||Savannah blues||Morris' Hot Babies ; Fats Waller||Jazz/dance ensemble||instrumentalist, cornet, leader, composer|
|Victor||BVE-38052||10-in.||5/20/1927||Won't you take me home?||Morris' Hot Babies ; Fats Waller||Jazz/dance ensemble||instrumentalist, cornet, composer, leader|
|Victor||BVE-38115||10-in.||2/25/1927||Paradise wobble||Charlie Johnson’s Paradise Ten ; Monette Moore||Jazz/dance band, with female vocal solo||instrumentalist, cornet, composer|
Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Morris, Thomas," accessed April 21, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103510.
Morris, Thomas. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 21, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103510.
"Morris, Thomas." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 21 April 2021.
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