This I know. It’s an inscribed first edition of Eddie Condon’s 1947 autobiography, WE CALLED IT MUSIC. But beyond that. “It’s warm here now,” Condon writes to Lou in 1947. Then, thirteen years later, Lou inscribes the book to Woody or Woodie. I don’t think this is Woody Herman, although the Lou could be Robert Louis McGarity:
Any detectives out there, ready to leap on these clues? (What was the weather like in New York City — a plausible guess — on October 20, 1947?)
The pages that follow aren’t at all mysterious: an Eddie Condon Town Hall concert program from December 5, 1942. But in me they awake such longing. Why can’t I hear this band or these bands?
I want to be there. (Urban historians will note Thomas – Morton – Hall – Johnny Williams, a combination working under Teddy Wilson’s leadership at Cafe Society. In fact, some private recordings exist with Mel Powell taking Wilson’s place at around this time — not from this concert, though.)
May your happiness increase!