There surely is a story here.  The photograph (offered for sale on eBay) depicts Velma Middleton, Louis Armstrong, Barney Bigard, Jack Teagarden, a barely-in-the-frame Arvell Shaw and an almost-hidden Sidney Catlett:


That in itself is a find: new documentation of that wondrous constellation of musicians is enough for me.  We know that this photograph was taken some time between 1947 and 1949, Big Sid’s time with the band.

But here’s what’s on the back:

LOUIS - BUSHKIN photo rear

Pianist / singer / composer Joe Bushkin played with the All-Stars, but several years after this photograph was taken.  Does this artifact refer to the 1947 gathering where Louis and the band recorded Joe’s composition LOVELY WEATHER WE’RE HAVING as a wedding gift to the Bushkins?

I would be most eager to dial SUPERIOR 0026 if I knew that the person on the other end was in some way connected to this photograph.

For extra credit: we see three partially obscured letters behind Louis.  What words are we missing?

Postscript (as of 10:30 PM Eastern time, September 3): the photograph is still available on eBay: click here).

May your happiness increase!

2 responses to “DIAL “SUPERIOR 0026” FOR THE ANSWERS

  1. Michael Burgevin

    Man… that’s a wild one… the great musicians aside… I’m guessing it’s a club / dive what with the various fabric patterns on the back wall (diamonds and circles… bubbles?)… an electric fan (not running) on the floor… one low stool for someone to sit on… one mic for three of the greatest musicians in the world? — scattered cigarette butts… “OLL” are 3 letters in HOLLYWOOD… but that word doesn’t fit the space… “OLLIE” might do… was there a place called “OLLIE’S” (?) — Such an odd photograph certainly belongs in Pops’ Queens Museum! … love this kind of stuff! Thanks for the heads up MS /// mb

  2. It’s a mystical premonition of “Hello D OLL y.”
    Hmmm. Perhaps not…

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