Yale University Library


OHAM: Sonny Greer on Ellington


Sonny Greer and others                                                                  Acquisition; only

with unknown interviewer                                                             Greer interview has

location unknown                                                                            been transcribed

date unknown


Cassette Side a

Nellie Lutcher

Dunbar Hotel--being asked to sing--the "kitty"--tipping--"Blanket of Blue"--"The Object of My Affection"--recording--Louisiana and Texas--traveling on the road with the Imperials--roadhouses--a hair-raising story.

Hayes Pillars (baritone sax)

Chattanooga--the Dent Hotel--getting meals--the sax players--pawning a sax to get to the next engagement in Alabama--joining Johnny Brown's band--getting two cars and touring Mississippi--going to Chicago--joining Alphonso Trent's band--playing in Texas and on the radio--writing arrangements collectively--members of the band--brother joined band.

Sonny Greer                                                                                                  pp. 1-2

Cotton Club radio broadcasts--the classy presentation--traveling by Pullman car--carried lights, stage--costumes--living in the Pullman car--"the Ellington band was legendary"--

Cassette Side b:

Sonny Greer (continued)                                                                             pp. 3-5

"Sophisticated Lady"--"Mood Indigo"--Cotton Club--Duke and Sonny--the racketeers--the first Cotton Club show--opening night--the Cotton Club Girls.

Arthur Briggs (trumpet) [February 25, 1982, Paris]

mistake in contract resulting in money--playing with Marion Cook's band in England (1919)--salaries--the arrangements--the band broke up--Bechet joined Bennie Peyton and Buddy Gilmore.

Bill ??  (banjo, cornet, and mellophone)

Grandmother buying cornet--copying Louie Conico's solos in the wrong keys--playing banjo and cornet at Hamilton Lake (1921)--the Sunday School Orchestra--giving up horn to grandmother--the Ohio Lucky Seven--playing in armories--starting on mellophone.

??  (bass)

Playing with Fred Waring--inspired by John Kirby and Billy Taylor Sr.--with Tina Bradshaw (1934)--played with Les Robinson at Club Harlem--Catskills replacing Erskine Hawkins' rhythm section with Fathead Laurence--came to New York--met Serious Miley's--got a job with Billy Hicks and His Sizzling Six.