Still more from our friend and hero Dan Morgenstern, recalling those days when the boundaries between “styles” weren’t quite so high or solidly built: the “Dixieland” scene in New York of the late Forties and the Fifties, with quick portraits of George Brunies (or Georg Brunis) but also Steve Lacy.
Brunis is legendary — from the New Orleans Rhythm Kings to Ted Lewis to Muggsy Spanier’s Ragtime Band and Eddie Condon, as well as his own groups, but he’s not often heard. Here he is in concert in 1947 — his own blues, which gives a very good idea of his ebullient personality (along with Joe Sullivan, Pops Foster, and Baby Dodds):
Here’s Brunis’ “two Irishmen” version of IN THE SHADE OF THE OLD APPLE TREE, featuring Max Kaminsky:
YouTube offers videos of Brunis with Art Hodes in 1968 and with Bobby Hackett, Eddie Condon, and Pee Wee Russell thirty years earlier. But enough prelude: here’s Dan:
The segment ends incompletely, which is my fault, but it means that when Dan and I meet again I will ask him about Cecil Scott, a hero of mine. And of his.
May your happiness increase!