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Steve Brown

Theodore "Steve" Brown (January 13, 1890 - September 15, 1965) was a jazz musician best known for his work on string bass. Like many New Orleans bassists, he played both string bass and tuba professionally.

Brown was the younger brother of trombonist Tom Brown. In his youth he played with his brother's band in New Orleans. Because of his devil-may-care personality he was nicknamed "Steve" after Steve Brodie, a man who became famous for jumping off the Brooklyn Bridge on a dare. Few musicians knew Brown's real name.

Brown went north to Chicago in 1915 with his brother Tom in the first wave of jazz musicians to go to the city. He was a member of the New Orleans Rhythm Kings in the early 1920s, where his slap style on bass attracted attention.

In 1924 he joined Jean Goldkette's Orchestra, with whom he remained until 1927, creating the first recordings of the style. In 1927, he joined the top-paying band in the United States, Paul Whiteman's Orchestra.

Around 1930 he settled in Detroit, Michigan, which would be his home for the rest of his life. He led his own band and continued playing with traditional jazz and Dixieland bands into the 1950s.

Wellman Braud, bass player with the Duke Ellington orchestra, once called Brown the greatest of all bass players.

Birth and Death Data: Born January 13th, 1890 (New Orleans), Died September 15th, 1965 (Detroit)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1926 - 1928

Roles Represented in DAHR: string bass

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 40 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor BVE-27268 10-in. 1/11/1928 Parade of the wooden soldiers Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36813 10-in. 10/12/1926 Idolizing Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36814 10-in. 10/12/1926 I'd rather be the girl in your arms (Than the girl in your dreams) Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo (takes 5-8); with male vocal trio (takes 1-4) instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36815 10-in. 10/12/1926 Hush-a-bye Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36829 10-in. 10/15/1926 Sunday Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with mixed vocal chorus instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36830 10-in. 10/15/1926 Cover me up with sunshine (And feather my nest with love) Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-36831 10-in. 10/15/1926 Just one more kiss Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37579 10-in. 1/28/1927 Proud of a baby like you Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with mixed vocal trio instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37580 10-in. 1/28/1927 I'm looking over a four leaf clover Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37583 10-in. 1/31/1927 I'm gonna meet my sweetie now Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37584 10-in. 1/31/1927 Hoosier sweetheart Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37586 10-in. 2/1/1927 Look at the world and smile Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37587 10-in. 2/1/1927 My pretty girl Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37588 10-in. 2/1/1927 Stampede Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37599 10-in. 2/3/1927 Sunny disposish Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal quartet instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-37738 10-in. 2/3/1927 A lane in Spain Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal quartet instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-38264 10-in. 5/16/1927 In my merry Oldsmobile Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-38267 10-in. 5/23/1927 Play it, Red Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-38268 10-in. 5/23/1927 In my merry Oldsmobile Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal chorus instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-40211 10-in. 9/15/1927 Blue river Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-40212 10-in. 9/15/1927 Clementine (From New Orleans) Jean Goldkette Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor CVE-40901 12-in. 11/18/1927 Washboard blues Hoagy Carmichael ; Paul Whiteman Concert Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-40937 10-in. 11/23/1927 Changes Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal trio instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-40945 10-in. 11/25/1927 Mary (What are you waiting for?) Bing Crosby ; Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, string bass  
Victor BVE-41293 10-in. 1/4/1928 Ramona Paul Whiteman Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal duet instrumentalist, string bass  
(Results 1-25 of 40 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Brown, Steve," accessed August 4, 2020, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/114239.

Brown, Steve. (2020). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved August 4, 2020, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/114239.

"Brown, Steve." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2020. Web. 4 August 2020.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/114239

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