Last week, I met Leo McConville, Jr. and his wife Linda in New York City . . . they are warm, friendly people and we had a laughter-filled time.
Leo brought copies of some photographs that included his father, and I was able to identify a few more characters — Vic Berton, Miff Mole, Red Nichols, possibly Larry Binyon (these photos will emerge on JAZZ LIVES in time). But here are several photographs that would benefit from collective explication.
What can my readers tell us? Inquiring minds want to know.
Let’s start with a fairly straightforward one:
I’d say Miff Mole, then the pride of Ogden, Utah — Loring “Red” Nichols, and Leo. I originally thought the mellophone player was Dudley Fosdick, but Enrico Borsetti explained that this was the brass section of Don Voorhees’ EARL CARROLL’S VANITIES orchestra and that the mellophonist (?) was Bill Trone.
Recognize anyone? I’d place this — at the latest — 1934 — but that’s only because Leo left New York City and the music business around then. He is standing in the middle, behind the right shoulder of the seated man (the leader?).
News flash from a friend in 2014: that’s the Paul Specht Orchestra with guitarist Roy Smeck as featured soloist.
And something charming but more mysterious. Who are these people? Jimmy Dorsey is the driver. But the ladies?
Here’s Jimmy and “Jamie” on their wedding day, Valentine’s Day, 1928:
As an experiment, here are the photographs at double the size above to aid JAZZ LIVES readers reaching for magnifying glasses. The ratio is distorted, but the details are larger. Here’s the Peerless Quartet:
And that mysterious band:
What car is Jimmy driving?
I couldn’t omit the happy couple — watch fob and bouquet in full splendor.
Your thoughts, fellow scholars?