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JEFFREY M A G E E 23

"King Porter Stomp" and the Jazz Tradition* J a z z h i s t o r i a n s have r e i n f o r c e d a n d e x p a n d e d M o r t o n ' s c l a i m a n d


G o o d m a n ' s t e s t i m o n y . T h e P a l o m a r e x p l o s i o n a n d its aftershocks have
By Jeffrey Magee l e d some historians to cite i t as the b i r t h o f the S w i n g E r a , m o s t n o t a b l y
M a r s h a l l W . Stearns, w h o , after t r a c i n g j a z z ' s d e v e l o p m e n t i n 1 9 3 0 - 3 4 ,
c o u l d s i m p l y assert, " T h e S w i n g E r a was b o r n o n t h e n i g h t o f 21 A u g u s t
1 9 3 5 " ( S t e a r n s 1 9 5 6 : 2 1 1 ; see e c h o e s o f this s t a t e m e n t i n E r e n b e r g
F l e t c h e r w o n q u i t e a few battles o f m u s i c w i t h " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . "
1 9 9 8 : 3 - 4 , a n d G i d d i n s 1 9 9 8 : 1 5 6 ) . G u n t h e r S c h u l l e r has c a l l e d " K i n g
A n d J e l l y R o l l M o r t o n k n e w this, a n d h e u s e d to g o a n d say "I m a d e
P o r t e r S t o m p " o n e o f the " d o z e n o r so m a j o r stations i n the d e v e l o p m e n t
F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n . " A n d F l e t c h e r u s e d to l a u g h . . . a n d say " Y o u
o f j a z z i n the twenty years b e t w e e n 1926 a n d 1946" ( S c h u l l e r 1989:840).
d i d , " y o u k n o w . H e w o u l d n ' t argue. ( H e n d e r s o n 1975, 1:69) A n d G o o d m a n ' s r e c o r d i n g , h e w r o t e elsewhere, "was largely r e s p o n s i b l e
for u s h e r i n g i n t h e S w i n g E r a " ( S c h u l l e r 1985). O n e o f M o r t o n ' s m a n y
T o w a r d the e n d o f his life i n M a y 1938, F e r d i n a n d "Jelly R o l l " M o r t o n recordings o f " K i n g Porter S t o m p " appeared o n the canon-shaping
(1890-1941) walked into the Library o f Congress's C o o l i d g e A u d i t o r i u m Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz ( n o w o u t o f p r i n t ) , a n d H e n d e r s o n ' s
s p o r t i n g a n e x p e n s i v e suit, a g o l d w a t c h f o b a n d r i n g s , a n d a d i a m o n d - a n d G o o d m a n ' s versions m a y b e f o u n d o n the S m i t h s o n i a n ' s Big-Band Jazz
s t u d d e d i n c i s o r ( L o m a x 1993:xvii). H e sat d o w n at t h e p i a n o a n d , w i t h the a n t h o l o g y . O t h e r reissues o f G o o d m a n ' s a n d H e n d e r s o n ' s r e c o r d i n g s
assistance o f f o l k l o r i s t A l a n L o m a x , c o n v e y e d h i s m u s i c a n d life story i n t o 2
r e m a i n easily accessible. M o r e recently, K e n B u r n s ' s television d o c u m e n -
what L o m a x c a l l e d a "one-lung portable Presto recorder" (ibid.:287). tary Jazz h i g h l i g h t e d t h e p i e c e as p a r a d i g m a t i c . I n the l i n e r notes f o r the
S p e a k i n g i n a m e a s u r e d , o r o t u n d b a r i t o n e , M o r t o n e x p l o r e d h i s past at a p r o g r a m ' s spin-off c o m p a c t disc a n t h o l o g y , L o r e n S c h o e n b e r g has w r i t t e n
leisurely, d i g n i f i e d pace, b u t h e was eager to set the r e c o r d straight o n o n e t h a t the " p e d i g r e e o f ' K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p ' traces t h e e v o l u t i o n o f j a z z
p a r t i c u l a r subject: that h e h a d "personally o r i g i n a t e d j a z z i n N e w O r l e a n s composition" (Burns 2000:10). 3

i n 1902" ( i b i d . : 8 4 ) . H i s t o r i a n s have since s h o w n the o r i g i n s o f j a z z to be


A piece i n s p i r i n g s u c h vast c l a i m s deserves to have its story t o l d , espe-
m o r e c o m p l i c a t e d t h a n M o r t o n a l l o w e d ( G u s h e e 1994; Panetta 2 0 0 0 ) , b u t
c i a l l y as s c h o l a r s q u e s t i o n t h e v a l u e o f c a n o n f o r m a t i o n i n j a z z studies
n o n e c a n refute t h e story o f his m o s t p o p u l a r a n d e n d u r i n g c o m p o s i t i o n ,
a n d even the "seductive m e n a c e " o f records that constitute the c a n o n
" K i n g Porter Stomp":
( G a b b a r d 1995:1-28; R a s u l a 1995:134). F o r as the j a z z c a n o n o r m o r e
p r o p e r l y , j a z z c a n o n s c o n t i n u e s to serve u s e f u l p e d a g o g i c a l , h i s t o r i o -
[ T ] h i s t u n e b e c o m e to be t h e o u t s t a n d i n g favorite o f every great h o t g r a p h i c a l , a n d p e r f o r m a t i v e purposes, the works that c o m p r i s e i t s h o u l d
b a n d t h r o u g h o u t the w o r l d that h a d the a c c o m p l i s h m e n t s a n d q u a l i - n o t be i g n o r e d so m u c h as they s h o u l d be investigated m o r e t h o r o u g h l y . 4

fications o f p l a y i n g it. A n d u n t i l today this t u n e has b e e n the cause If, as R o b e r t W a l s e r has a r g u e d , "the p r i c e o f classicism is always loss o f
o f m a n y great b a n d s to c o m e to fame. It has c a u s e d the o u t s t a n d i n g specificity" (Walser 1995:169), t h e n we m i g h t b a l a n c e classicism w i t h more
tunes today to use the b a c k g r o u n d s that b e l o n g to " K i n g P o r t e r " i n specificity i n o r d e r to forestall t h e h o m o g e n i z a t i o n o f t h e j a z z c a n o n that
1
o r d e r to m a k e great tunes o f themselves. ( M o r t o n 1 9 3 8 ) 5
W a l s e r a n d others wish to a v o i d . " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " presents a n i n t r i g u -
i n g case i n j a z z history before b e b o p , because e x p l o r i n g its t r a n s f o r m a t i o n
" K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " d i d i n d e e d b e c o m e a s t a n d a r d d u r i n g the S w i n g f r o m m u l t i s t r a i n p i a n o p i e c e to b i g - b a n d s t a n d a r d reveals t h e p i e c e ' s
E r a , w i d e l y p e r f o r m e d by b i g b a n d s t h r o u g h o u t t h e 1930s a n d b e y o n d . c a n o n i c a l status to be less i n e v i t a b l e t h a n a n o m a l o u s a n d r a t h e r u n l i k e l y .
M o r e o v e r , as M o r t o n s a i d , m a n y m u s i c i a n s u s e d t h e c h o r d s , t h e "back-
g r o u n d s , " o f " K i n g P o r t e r " ' s T r i o a n d S t o m p s e c t i o n s as t h e basis f o r "Private Material" (ca. 1907-1923)
n e w tunes. A d d i n g luster to " K i n g Porter"'s agency i n j a z z history, B e n n y " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " h a d e x i s t e d f o r n e a r l y t h r e e decades before mak-
G o o d m a n gave the p i e c e a key r o l e i n a n a c c o u n t o f his b a n d ' s l e g e n d a r y i n g a n a t i o n a l i m p a c t i n 1935. M o r t o n h i m s e l f c l a i m e d to have c o n c e i v e d
p e r f o r m a n c e at t h e P a l o m a r B a l l r o o m i n L o s A n g e l e s o n t h e n i g h t o f it i n 1905 ( L o m a x 1993:146). F o l l o w i n g R o y C a r e w , w h o assisted M o r t o n
A u g u s t 2 1 , 1935. A s G o o d m a n r e c a l l e d , w h e n t h e b a n d started p l a y i n g late i n his life, J a m e s D a p o g n y suggests a date o f 1906 ( D a p o g n y 1982:25,
Fletcher Henderson's arrangements o f "Sometimes I ' m H a p p y " a n d " K i n g 4 9 6 ) . L a w r e n c e G u s h e e w h o d i s c o v e r e d that M o r t o n was b o r n i n 1890,
P o r t e r S t o m p , " the "place e x p l o d e d " ( G o o d e 1986). n o t i n 1885, as h e h i m s e l f c l a i m e d d a t e s M o r t o n ' s first c o m p o s i t i o n s
Current Musicology. nos. 71-73 (Spring 2001-Spring 2002)
2002 by the Trustees o f C o l u m b i a University i n the City o f New York
24 C U R R E N T MUSICOI.OGY JEFFREY M A G E E 25

slightly later, d u r i n g a n i t i n e r a n t p e r i o d i n 1907-11. " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " h e saw m u c h m o r e benefit i n w i t h h o l d i n g t h e m f r o m p u b l i c a t i o n , as he


h a d p r o b a b l y b e e n c o m p o s e d ( i f n o t w r i t t e n d o w n a n d titled) by 1910, e x p l a i n e d to L o m a x :
w h e n M o r t o n m e t the m a n f o r w h o m h e n a m e d t h e p i e c e ( G u s h e e
1 9 8 5 : 3 9 6 - 9 7 ) . W h a t e v e r the case, the p i e c e stands as o n e o f M o r t o n ' s Y o u may w o n d e r why I d i d n ' t c o p y r i g h t m y tunes i n the o l d days . . .
earliest c o m p o s i t i o n s , c o n c e i v e d by a y o u n g p i a n i s t i n the peak d e c a d e o f T h e fact is that the p u b l i s h e r s t h o u g h t they c o u l d b u y a n y t h i n g they
ragtime. w a n t e d f o r fifteen o r twenty d o l l a r s . N o w i f y o u was a g o o d p i a n o
T h e title, l i k e the c o m p o s e r , c o n j u r e s b o t h a r i s t o c r a t i c gravitas a n d player, y o u h a d ten j o b s w a i t i n g for y o u as s o o n as y o u h i t any t o w n
h o n k y - t o n k grit. I n M o r t o n ' s a c c o u n t , h e n a m e d the p i e c e after P o r t e r a n d so fifteen o r twenty d o l l a r s o r a h u n d r e d d o l l a r s d i d z i ' t m e a n
K i n g , "a very d e a r f r i e n d o f m i n e a n d a m a r v e l o u s pianist" f r o m F l o r i d a . very m u c h to us. . . . So we k e p t o u r m e l o d i e s f o r o u r private m a t e r i a l
K i n g , a c c o r d i n g to M o r t o n , was to use to battle e a c h o t h e r i n battles o f m u s i c . ( L o m a x 1 9 9 3 : 1 4 6 - 4 7 )

a n e d u c a t e d g e n t l e m a n w i t h a w o n d e r f u l m u s i c a l e d u c a t i o n , far Publication and Early Piano Recordings (1923-26)


m u c h better t h a n m i n e . . . h e s e e m e d to have a k i n d o f a y e n for m y M o r t o n n e v e r s h e d his distrust o f p u b l i s h e r s (Stewart 1 9 9 1 : 1 6 8 - 6 9 ) ,
style o f p l a y i n g . A n d o f course h e p a r t i c u l a r l y l i k e [sic] this type o f b u t by 1923 h e h a d m o r e i n c e n t i v e to p r o t e c t a n d p r o m o t e his m u s i c .
n u m b e r that I was p l a y i n g , a n d that was the reason that I n a m e d it T h a t year h e m o v e d to C h i c a g o a n d b e g a n a n association w i t h the M e l r o s e
after h i m , b u t n o t " P o r t e r K i n g " ; I c h a n g e d the n a m e b a c k w a r d s a n d B r o t h e r s , w h o p u b l i s h e d M o r t o n ' s w o r k s after h e h a d r e c o r d e d t h e m
c a l l e d it " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . " ( M o r t o n 1938) ( D a p o g n y 1982:20). A t this p o i n t , the M e l r o s e B r o t h e r s M u s i c C o . was a
f l e d g l i n g , "small-time" o p e r a t i o n w i t h a "modest store," as R i c k K e n n e d y
A s for the " s t o m p " part o f the title, M o r t o n staked a n o t h e r m a j o r c l a i m , has n o t e d , b u t i t " s t o o d at the f o r e f r o n t o f the n e w j a z z m o v e m e n t "
c o n s i d e r i n g the t e r m ' s w i d e s p r e a d use i n the 1920s a n d b e y o n d . ' " K i n g ( K e n n e d y 1 9 9 4 : 7 2 - 7 3 ) . A l t h o u g h M o r t o n h a d seen his first p u b l i c a t i o n i n
P o r t e r ' was the first t u n e w i t h the n a m e ' s t o m p ' w r o t e i n t h e U n i t e d 1915 ("The O r i g i n a l J e l l y R o l l B l u e s " [ W i l l Rossiter, C h i c a g o ] ) , the j a z z
States," he said, c o n f e s s i n g , "I d o n ' t k n o w what the t e r m ' s t o m p ' m e a n v o g u e that h a d b e g u n i n 1917 a n d crested i n 1 9 2 3 - 2 4 n o w c o a x e d m o r e
m y s e l f [sic]. T h e r e w a s n ' t r e a l l y any m e a n i n g o n l y t h a t p e o p l e w o u l d o f M o r t o n ' s m u s i c i n t o the p u b l i c arena, w h e r e o t h e r m u s i c i a n s c o u l d play
stamp t h e i r feet a n d I d e c i d e d that the n a m e ' s t o m p ' w o u l d be fitted for it i n t h e i r o w n way. M o r t o n q u i c k l y a c h i e v e d success w i t h " W o l v e r i n e
it" ( M o r t o n 1938). S c h u l l e r defines "stomp" as " s y n o n y m o u s w i t h blues" Blues," the first o f his pieces that M e l r o s e issued ( D a p o g n y 1982:20, 6 3 - 6 4 ) .
a n d i n d i c a t i n g a p i e c e w i t h a "heavy o r s t r o n g l y m a r k e d beat" ( S c h u l l e r " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p , " however, d i d n o t s h o w p r o m i s e o f b e c o m i n g a
1968:382). B y the 1920s s t o m p s c o m p r i s e d a l o o s e l y d e f i n e d m a r k e t i n g hit, m u c h less a s t a n d a r d , i n j a z z o r any o t h e r repertory. M o r t o n p l a y e d
category f o r fast, h a r d - d r i v i n g j a z z - o r i e n t e d m u s i c , s o m e h o w d i s t i n g u i s h e d the p i e c e i n h i s first s o l o r e c o r d i n g session ( J u l y 17, 1923, R i c h m o n d ,
f r o m blues, as i n the "blues a n d stomps" series o f M o r t o n ' s c o m p o s i t i o n s I n d i a n a , G e n n e t t 5 2 8 9 ) , suggesting the w o r k ' s p r i d e o f place i n his reper-
p u b l i s h e d by the C h i c a g o - b a s e d M e l r o s e B r o t h e r s M u s i c C o . ( D a p o g n y tory. ( H e u l t i m a t e l y m a d e m o r e r e c o r d i n g s o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " t h a n
1982: p l a t e b e t w e e n 3 6 - 3 7 ) . O n the c o p y r i g h t r e g i s t r a t i o n c a r d at the o f any o f h i s o t h e r pieces [ D a p o g n y 1982:495].) T h e n e x t year the p i e c e
L i b r a r y o f C o n g r e s s , the M e l r o s e B r o t h e r s a i m to have it b o t h ways: there, was f u r t h e r d i s s e m i n a t e d t h r o u g h a c o u p l e o f p r e - p u b l i c a t i o n "plugs" a n d
the p i e c e bears the subtitle " D i x i e l a n d s t o m p , blues master p i e c e [sic]." M e l r o s e ' s d u a l p u b l i c a t i o n o f the w o r k as a p i a n o s o l o a n d as a d a n c e -
I f M o r t o n w r o t e a n y t h i n g d o w n w h e n h e c o m p o s e d the p i e c e , n o b a n d a r r a n g e m e n t . J u d g i n g f r o m the d o c u m e n t e d r e c o r d i n g legacy f r o m
sources have c o m e to l i g h t . T h e earliest v e r s i o n is M o r t o n ' s s o l o p i a n o 1923 t h r o u g h 1927 (see table 1 ) , h o w e v e r , the p i e c e f a i l e d to attract
r e c o r d i n g o f 1923, a n d his p u b l i s h e r d i d n o t c l a i m its c o p y r i g h t o r p u b l i s h a b r o a d or sustained following a m o n g other musicianseven though
it u n t i l late i n the f o l l o w i n g year. S u c h facts suggest that M o r t o n h a d a Variety, i n late 1924, h a d o b s e r v e d a " r e c o r d i n g v o g u e " f o r " o n l y ' h o t '
casual o r naive attitude a b o u t p u b l i c a t i o n . C e r t a i n l y , he s t o o d outside the tunes" {Variety, N o v e m b e r 12, 1924). C e r t a i n l y , the p i e c e c a m e n o w h e r e
o r b i t o f aggressive T i n P a n A l l e y s o n g p l u g g i n g a n d the s m a l l e r i n d u s t r y n e a r m a t c h i n g the interest raised by a n o t h e r "hot" M e l r o s e p u b l i c a t i o n ,
o f m i d w e s t e r n r a g t i m e , w h o s e l e a d i n g c o m p o s e r s r e g u l a r l y saw t h e i r works C h a r l i e Davis's " C o p e n h a g e n , " w h i c h spread rapidly a m o n g bands i n
p u b l i s h e d s o o n after c o m p o s i n g t h e m . B u t M o r t o n was a n y t h i n g b u t ca- C h i c a g o a n d N e w Y o r k after its p u b l i c a t i o n i n O c t o b e r 1924 ( M a g e e
sual o r naive a b o u t the m a r k e t v a l u e o f his w o r k s . A s a n i t i n e r a n t pianist, 1995:51, 5 5 ) .
26 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 27

Table 1 A n o b v i o u s e x p l a n a t i o n f o r the p i e c e ' s i n i t i a l failure to c a t c h o n m i g h t


"King Porter Stomp": A discography, 1923-1942* s e e m to be that by 1924 " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " was d e c i d e d l y o l d - f a s h i o n e d ,
Date Artist/Group Matrix N o .
a s t r a i n - f o r m p i e c e f r o m the r a g t i m e era. B u t M e l r o s e h a d n o reason to
t h i n k that w o u l d h i n d e r its chances i n the m a r k e t p l a c e . D a n c e b a n d s o f
1923 July 17 Jelly R o l l M o r t o n Gennett 5289 the e r a o c c a s i o n a l l y p l a y e d o l d e r m a t e r i a l , i n c l u d i n g " M a p l e L e a f R a g "
1924 ca. October A l Turk's Princess Orchestra Olympic 1463 (1899), " H i g h Society" (1901), " P a n a m a " (1911), a n d " E c c e n t r i c " (1912),
November 3 Benson Orchestra of Chicago rejected
as w e l l as m o r e r e c e n t l y p u b l i s h e d strain-form pieces s u c h as " T i g e r R a g "
ca. December K i n g Oliver and Jelly R o l l M o r t o n Autograph 617
1925 ca. February 3 J o h n n y Sylvester and His Orchestra
(1917), " C l a r i n e t M a r m a l a d e " (1918), a n d " C o p e n h a g e n " ( C r a w f o r d a n d
Pathe Actuelle
6

036211 Magee 1992:xii-xiii, a n d passim u n d e r song titles).


February 20 Fletcher Henderson and H i s Orchestra rejected A c l o s e r l o o k at " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " as i t a p p e a r e d i n the M e l r o s e
February 26 Lanin's R e d Heads C o l u m b i a 327-D sheet m u s i c p u b l i c a t i o n a n d M o r t o n ' s early r e c o r d i n g s reveals the q u a l i -
March Charles Creath's Jazz-O-Maniacs O k e h 41565
1926 A p r i l 20
ties that m a d e the p i e c e b o t h o l d - s o u n d i n g a n d u n i q u e i n the early 1920s
Jelly R o l l M o r t o n Vocalion 1020
1928 M a r c h 14 Fletcher Henderson and His Orchestra C o l u m b i a 1543-D (ex. 1). A n o b s e r v a t i o n by D a p o g n y c a n serve as a s t a r t i n g p o i n t :
1932 December 9 Fletcher Henderson and His Orchestra O k e h 41565 " [ M o r t o n ' s ] d e p a r t u r e f r o m r a g t i m e style is m o r e r a d i c a l t h a n the surface
late 1932 Cab Calloway and His Orchestra Stash ST124 o f his p l a y i n g m i g h t suggest" ( D a p o g n y 1982:11). A n d as D a p o g n y puts it,
[taped broadcast from Cotton Club, New York] the piece's f i n a l strain is "one o f M o r t o n ' s m o s t f o r w a r d - l o o k i n g creations"
1933 August 18 Fletcher Henderson and H i s Orchestra Brunswick A-9771
( D a p o g n y 1982:496). Y e t the f o r w a r d - l o o k i n g elements rise i n r e l i e f o n l y
1934 September 14 Claude Hopkins and His Orchestra Decca 184
1935 A p r i l 29 Isham Jones and His Orchestra
after ragtime roots are r e c o g n i z e d . First, the o v e r a l l f o r m a n d key s c h e m e
Rumbleseat Records
RS 103 o f the p i e c e , as M o r t o n r e c o r d e d a n d p u b l i s h e d i t i n 1924, r e s e m b l e s c o n -
June 6 Rhythm Makers Orchestra N B C Thesaurus 127 v e n t i o n a l n o n - d a c a p o m a r c h a n d d a n c e f o r m s , a n d p i a n o r a g t i m e as
[Benny G o o d m a n Orchestra] s t a n d a r d i z e d i n the w o r k o f J o p l i n a n d others. (It lacks o n e f o r m a l q u a l i t y
Julyl Benny G o o d m a n and His Orchestra Victor 25090 r e g u l a r l y seen i n J o p l i n ' s rags, however: the first strain's r e t u r n after the
November 6 Blanche Calloway and H e r Orchestra Vocalion 3112
s e c o n d strain.)
[as "I Gotta Swing"]
1936 February C h i c k Webb and His Orchestra Polydor 423248
1937 January 10 C o u n t Basie and His Orchestra
Interlude Trio Stomp
Jazz Archives JA-16
[taped broadcast from "Chatterbox," L [: A i 6 : ] [: B i 6 : ] X4 Cie Cxi6 Cx'i6
W i l l i a m Penn H o t e l , Pittsburgh] A^ Dl,
May 17 Teddy H i l l and His N B C Orchestra Bluebird B-6988
July 13 Benny G o o d m a n and His Orchestra C o l u m b i a ML4591 T h e roles o f the h a n d s show b o t h M o r t o n ' s i n d e b t e d n e s s to a n d depar-
December 16 Harry Roy and H i s Orchestra Parlophone 1158 t u r e f r o m r a g t i m e c o n v e n t i o n s . A s i n r a g t i m e , the left h a n d serves t h e
1938 May-July Jelly R o l l M o r t o n (2) Circle 23-24 d u a l p u r p o s e o f m a r k i n g the beat a n d s u p p l y i n g the h a r m o n i c f o u n d a -
Circle 73-69 t i o n , w h i l e the r i g h t h a n d features a variety o f s y n c o p a t e d patterns that
August Jelly R o l l M o r t o n rejected
September 12
play against the pulse. T h e s e c o n d strain is the m o s t c o n v e n t i o n a l l y rag-
Erskine Hawkins and His Orchestra Bluebird B-7839
September 27 G l e n n M i l l e r and His Orchestra ? l i k e , w i t h a n a l t e r n a t i o n o f octaves a n d c h o r d s i n the left h a n d , a n d a
1939 April 6 Harry James and His Orchestra Brunswick 8366 r i g h t - h a n d p a t t e r n b a s e d o n the " M a p l e L e a f R a g " m o t i f . M e a n w h i l e ,
December 14 Jelly R o l l M o r t o n General 4005 M o r t o n also steers away f r o m r a g t i m e ' s r e g u l a r i t y a n d r e p e t i t i o n . A t the
1940 February 7 Metronome Ail-Star Band C o l u m b i a 36389 o p e n i n g o f the first strain, f o r e x a m p l e , M o r t o n p l a y e d a n d p u b l i s h e d par-
M a r c h 28 Teddy B u n n Blue Note 503
a l l e l fifths, l e n d i n g force a n d w e i g h t to the o p e n i n g i d e a . I n the s e c o n d
May 28 Zutty Singleton and H i s Orchestra Decca 18093
July 14 Jelly R o l l M o r t o n strain, the left h a n d plays N e w O r l e a n s - s t y l e "tailgate" t r o m b o n e breaks.
Pirate MPC-502
July 27 Cab Calloway and His Orchestra Jazz Panorama 16 M o r t o n ' s early r e c o r d i n g s o f the t u n e reveal left-hand patterns even m o r e
1942 January 27 Bob Crosby and His Orchestra Decca 4390 active a n d v a r i e d t h a n the sheet m u s i c shows: " t r o m b o n e " figures, synco-
p a t i o n , a n d f o r c e f u l accents j o l t the texture, especially i n the o p e n i n g o f
*Adapted and expanded from Richard Crawford and Jeffrey Magee (1992), which was com-
M o r t o n ' s 1926 r e c o r d i n g .
piled from Brian Rust (1982).
28 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 29

Example 1: " K i n g Porter Stomp." By Ferd "Jelly Roll" M o r t o n . 1924 (Renewed) E D W I N H . Example 1 (cont.)
M O R R I S & C O M P A N Y , A Division of M P L Communications, Inc. This arrangement
2002 E D W I N H . M O R R I S & C O M P A N Y , A Division of M P L Communications, Inc. A l l
Rights Reserved

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30 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 31

Example 1 (cont.) U s e o f riffs reveals a n o t h e r way i n w h i c h M o r t o n reaches b e y o n d rag-


t i m e . I n the T r i o a n d S t o m p strains, M o r t o n b u i l d s eight-bar phrases f r o m
r e p e a t e d one- a n d two-bar riffs. C o n v e n t i o n a l l y c o n s i d e r e d a p h e n o m e n o n
a p p e a r i n g i n b a n d a r r a n g e m e n t s o f the 1930s a n d 1940s, riffs d i s t i n g u i s h
I H M o r t o n ' s style n o t o n l y i n " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p , " b u t also i n o t h e r pieces
s u c h as " B i g F o o t H a m , " " G r a n d p a ' s S p e l l s , " a n d " W o l v e r i n e B l u e s "
=r=f=? H
1
> >\ r 4 r ( D a p o g n y 1 9 8 2 : 4 9 6 a n d p a s s i m ) . M o r t o n ' s " K i n g P o r t e r " riffs, i n
1 1 1
\t T J r - D a p o g n y ' s w o r d s , " p o i n t e d the way f o r a r r a n g e r s a n d c o m p o s e r s for years
to c o m e " ( D a p o g n y 1982:496).
A l t h o u g h M o r t o n contrasts the T r i o a n d S t o m p strains w i t h riffs, h e u n -
derscores e a c h o f t h e m w i t h a f o r m o f a r e c y c l i n g I V - V - I p r o g r e s s i o n , i n
w h i c h the t o n i c serves a d o m i n a n t f u n c t i o n , t o n i c i z i n g the s u b d o m i n a n t .
T h e b u i l t - i n m o m e n t u m o f starting away f r o m the t o n i c a n d r e t u r n i n g to
4 tiiJ i
it every two bars surely a c c o u n t s for the p i e c e ' s a p p e a l to later j a z z soloists.
M o r t o n d i s t i n g u i s h e s the h a r m o n i c p l a n s o f the T r i o a n d S t o m p o n l y
i n t h e i r bass lines. I n the T r i o , the t o n i c is a p p r o a c h e d by c h r o m a t i c de-

''ill scent i n the bass l i n e : B k A , A t , to D k I n the S t o m p , the t o n i c is r e a c h e d


t h r o u g h c h r o m a t i c ascent: G\>, G , A\>, to D k T h i s reveals a n o t h e r key de-
p a r t u r e f r o m r a g t i m e : c o n t r a s t i n g strains u n i f i e d by a c o m m o n h a r m o n i c
p l a n . T h e first e v i d e n c e o f M o r t o n ' s characteristic practice o f strain varia-
t i J t
,t*t 4tiJ t t i o n appears i n his 1915 p u b l i c a t i o n o f " O r i g i n a l J e l l y R o l l B l u e s , " w h i c h
1 1
r r '1 D a p o g n y , slightly m o r e decisively t h a n S c h u l l e r , calls " p r o b a b l y " the first
p u b l i s h e d j a z z c o m p o s i t i o n ( D a p o g n y 1982:293; cf. S c h u l l e r 1968:137).

ij),i., iffi^f iw-p i , . J 1 i ? J i . ^ J . h j J f i


I n the f i n a l s t r a i n , the h i g h El] draws a t t e n t i o n to a n o t h e r d i s t i n c t i v e

<^*Ht 'U 1J 1 Tr>


ht
feature o f M o r t o n ' s style: the b l u e note. E d w a r d B e r l i n has c i t e d a few ex-
f 1
a m p l e s o f b l u e s - i n f l e c t e d r a g t i m e pieces, yet they t e n d to p r o v e the r u l e
that, especially before 1912, r a g t i m e rarely got the blues ( B e r l i n 1 9 8 0 : 1 5 4 -
>4 j 4
6 0 ) . T h e blues saturate M o r t o n ' s works, however, a n d i n " K i n g P o r t e r " the
i 14 "jj r1 41^-4^ r r -J- b l u e t h i r d stands o u t as the m o s t distinctive p i t c h o f the c l i m a c t i c f i n a l
strain's riff.
^ -.1'*- Is " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " a rag? O n the surface it w o u l d a p p e a r so. I n
fact, o n a 1925 sheet m u s i c cover, M e l r o s e advertised the p i e c e as p a r t o f
"Jelly R o l l M o r t o n ' s F a m o u s B l u e s a n d R a g Series" ( D a p o g n y 1982: plate
b e t w e e n 3 6 - 3 7 ) . Y e t , a l t h o u g h his f o r m a n d s o m e figuration f o l l o w rag-
t i m e , it is clear that M o r t o n ' s v a r i e d left-hand style, his riff-based p h r a s e
structure, his variations o n the T r i o a n d S t o m p strains, a n d his use o f the
blues place " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " i n a n o t h e r w o r l d . Stylistically a n o m a l o u s
i n the early 1900s, the p i e c e w o u l d r e m a i n so i n the S w i n g E r a a n d b e y o n d .

Stock Arrangements and Early Band Recordings (1924-25)


T h e M e l r o s e B r o t h e r s gave the p i e c e every c h a n c e to succeed. H a d they
s i m p l y i s s u e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " as a p i a n o s o l o , i t m i g h t n o t have
32 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 33

f o u n d a n e w life as a b a n d a r r a n g e m e n t . A s was c u s t o m a r y i n the early 7 7


2, l e a d i n g to a s o m e w h a t deceptive r e t u r n to the t o n i c : A t I E I F I Bl> . A
1920s, however, the p u b l i s h e r issued the p i e c e i n a stock a r r a n g e m e n t for
novelty-style p i a n o s o l o i n the T r i o i n c l u d e s a few substitute c h o r d s , a n d i n
d a n c e o r c h e s t r a by E l m e r S c h o e b e l , o n e o f its staff arrangers. B e f o r e the 7 9
the e n d the b a n d slips f r o m the stock's c a d e n c e o n a D t c h o r d to a n E
f i r m c l a i m e d the p i e c e ' s c o p y r i g h t o n D e c e m b e r 9, 1924, it f o u n d two
c h o r d , r e c a l l i n g the i n t r o d u c t i o n ' s surprise c h o r d i n a n e w h a r m o n i c c o n -
b a n d s to p r o m o t e the p i e c e i n p r e - p u b l i c a t i o n r e c o r d i n g s (see table 1): A l
text. D e s p i t e s u c h typically N e w Y o r k - s t y l e twists, the b a n d plays i n a n o -
T u r k ' s P r i n c e s s O r c h e s t r a a n d the p o w e r f u l B e n s o n O r c h e s t r a o f C h i c a g o , 8
tably loose, f l e x i b l e q u a s i - N e w O r l e a n s style. T h i s suggests that L a n i n a n d
b o t h o f w h i c h h a d l i k e w i s e r e c o r d e d the M e l r o s e stock a r r a n g e m e n t o f
his s i d e m e n , l i k e most o t h e r j a z z - o r i e n t e d m u s i c i a n s i n 1924, were catch-
" C o p e n h a g e n " before its p u b l i c a t i o n i n late 1924 ( C r a w f o r d a n d M a g e e
i n g the s p i r i t a n d style o f K i n g O l i v e r ' s C r e o l e J a z z B a n d , w h o s e first
1992:16). In a d d i t i o n , M o r t o n a n d K i n g O l i v e r made an unusual d u o
r e c o r d i n g s h a d h i t N e w Y o r k w i t h i n the past year. T w o o t h e r things are
r e c o r d i n g o f the p i e c e w i t h i n a m o n t h o f the c o p y r i g h t c l a i m . O n it,
n o t a b l e a b o u t L a n i n ' s r e c o r d : a t r u m p e t s o l o (instead o f reeds) i n the first
M o r t o n keeps t i m e w i t h a s t a n d a r d rag-derived a l t e r n a t i n g bass as O l i v e r
strain a n d the use o f the T r i o , w i t h its c h r o m a t i c a l l y d e s c e n d i n g l i n e , as a
plays the m e l o d y a l m o s t note-for-note as i t a p p e a r s o n the sheet m u s i c .
f o u n d a t i o n f o r solos (by c l a r i n e t a n d p i a n o ) . Interestingly, b o t h o f these
H e a r i n g the r e c o r d i n g as a p u b l i s h e r - i n s t i g a t e d p l u g h e l p s a c c o u n t f o r the
features w o u l d a p p e a r i n H e n d e r s o n ' s r e c o r d i n g s i n 1928 a n d b e y o n d , yet
a p p a r e n t l y u n i m a g i n a t i v e p l a y i n g o n this r e c o r d , w h i c h has p u z z l e d at
L a n i n ' s d o c t o r e d stock h a r d l y r e p r e s e n t s the k i n d o f r e c o n c e p t i o n that
least o n e j a z z h i s t o r i a n ( G i o i a 1997:66).
H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d w o u l d later u n d e r t a k e .
T h e w h o l e p l u g g i n g p r o c e s s seems to have h a d a s h o r t - t e r m effect. C o n s i d e r i n g H e n d e r s o n ' s p r o m i n e n t c o n n e c t i o n to " K i n g P o r t e r
W i t h i n t h r e e m o n t h s o f the stock's p u b l i c a t i o n , several a d d i t i o n a l b a n d s S t o m p " i n the S w i n g E r a , his b a n d ' s 1925 r e c o r d i n g l o o m s large for its ab-
m a d e " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " records, i n c l u d i n g the St. L o u i s - b a s e d C h a r l e s sence: it was n e v e r released. B y this t i m e , H e n d e r s o n a n d L a n i n s h a r e d
C r e a t h ' s J a z z - O - M a n i a c s , a n d N e w Y o r k d a n c e o r c h e s t r a s l e d by w h i t e the m u s i c a l duties at the R o s e l a n d B a l l r o o m , m i d t o w n M a n h a t t a n ' s l e a d -
bandleader Sam L a n i n and black bandleader Fletcher Henderson. i n g d a n c e h a l l " t h e 'class' d a n c e place o n B r o a d w a y , " i n the w o r d s o f
A n y c o n s i d e r a t i o n o f these r e c o r d i n g s calls f o r a few w o r d s about the Variety's m o n o m i a l m u s i c c o l u m n i s t " A b e l " ( G r e e n ) , w r i t i n g i n O c t o b e r
stock a r r a n g e m e n t . T h e w h i t e pianist, c o m p o s e r , a n d b a n d l e a d e r E l m e r 1924 ( q u o t e d i n M a g e e 1995:48). D o n R e d m a n , H e n d e r s o n ' s p r i n c i p a l
S c h o e b e l was a t a l e n t e d a n d versatile m u s i c i a n i n the 1920s"a key figure a r r a n g e r a n d r e e d m a n , has r e c a l l e d the m a n y "battles o f m u s i c " that
i n C h i c a g o j a z z " ( S u d h a l t e r 1 9 9 9 : 3 1 ) b u t his a r r a n g e m e n t f o r M e l r o s e H e n d e r s o n ' s a n d L a n i n ' s b a n d s f o u g h t at the R o s e l a n d . " H e was at o n e
l o o k s l i k e s t a n d a r d w o r k f o r h i r e . It d i d what a stock was s u p p o s e d to d o : e n d o f the h a l l , " R e d m a n r e c a l l e d , " a n d we w e r e at the o t h e r , a n d i n
preserve the structure, h a r m o n y , m e l o d y , r h y t h m , textures, a n d o t h e r fig- the m i d d l e was the a r r a n g e r s ' table. . . . W e were always m a k i n g u p n e w
u r a t i o n o f its s o u r c e w h i l e g i v i n g it d a n c e o r c h e s t r a c o l o r s . T h e c l a r i n e t a r r a n g e m e n t s t r y i n g to top theirs" ( D r i g g s 1962:96). W e c a n o n l y w o n d e r
a n d alto s a x o p h o n e carry the m a i n m e l o d y t h r o u g h the i n t r o d u c t i o n a n d w h a t k i n d o f a r r a n g e m e n t R e d m a n m i g h t have w o r k e d u p f o r H e n d e r -
first two strains; the t r u m p e t s play most o f the riffs i n the T r i o a n d S t o m p . son's b a n d , w h i c h r e c o r d e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " o n F e b r u a r y 20, 1925,
T w o o f the early-1925 r e c o r d i n g s s h o w h o w b a n d s a d a p t e d the stock. j u s t six days b e f o r e L a n i n ' s d i d . T h e c l o s e n e s s o f t h e r e c o r d i n g d a t e s
7
C r e a t h ' s g r o u p , f e a t u r i n g the s o u l f u l t r u m p e t star w h o l e d the b a n d , leaves little d o u b t that the two b a n d s f o u g h t this battle o n two fronts: i n
clearly follows the stock a r r a n g e m e n t , d e p a r t i n g f r o m it i n j u s t two ways: the r e c o r d i n g studio as w e l l as i n the b a l l r o o m .
(1) C r e a t h p a r a p h r a s e s the S t o m p m e l o d y a c c o m p a n i e d o n l y by p i a n o , U n f o r t u n a t e l y , we n o w h e a r o n l y o n e side o f the battle. A t a n t a l i z i n g
a n d (2) the b a n d repeats the T r i o a n d first S t o m p sections. S u c h m i n o r question remains: d i d Louis A r m s t r o n g , who j o i n e d Henderson's band
a l t e r a t i o n s were u n r e m a r k a b l e at a t i m e w h e n the m o s t p o p u l a r b a n d s a few m o n t h s e a r l i e r , p l a y a r o l e i n the r e c o r d i n g ? If H e n d e r s o n was
r e g u l a r l y " d o c t o r e d " stocks o r wrote t h e i r o w n "specials" ( a r r a n g e m e n t s " b a t t l i n g " L a n i n with this p i e c e i n early 1925, h e s h o u l d have f e a t u r e d
t a i l o r e d b y a b a n d ' s staff a r r a n g e r to f e a t u r e t h a t b a n d ' s p a r t i c u l a r A r m s t r o n g , as h e often d i d , as a w e a p o n f r o m his arsenal that L a n i n c o u l d
strengths). n o t m a t c h . I n fact, a m o n g the thirty-one r e c o r d i n g s H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d
I n c o n t r a s t , L a n i n ' s R e d H e a d s take c o n s i d e r a b l e l i b e r t i e s w i t h the m a d e since A r m s t r o n g h a d j o i n e d it i n O c t o b e r , o n l y six d o n o t feature a n
stock. T h e i r f o u r - b a r i n t r o d u c t i o n features a n e w h a r m o n i c s c h e m e . A r m s t r o n g solo, so m o r e l i k e l y t h a n not, A r m s t r o n g h a d a s o l o o n " K i n g
I n s t e a d o f M o r t o n ' s a l t e r n a t i o n o f t o n i c (Al>) a n d d i m i n i s h e d c h o r d s , P o r t e r S t o m p . " E v i d e n c e f r o m later H e n d e r s o n r e c o r d i n g s invites f u r t h e r
L a n i n ' s b a n d plays a h a r m o n i c surprise, the m a j o r s u b m e d i a n t i n m e a s u r e s p e c u l a t i o n o n that p o i n t .
34 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 35

Henderson's Stomp: From Stock to H e a d (1928-33)


Table 2
After the b r i e f f l u r r y o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " r e c o r d i n g s i n early 1925,
F o r m o u t l i n e s o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " r e c o r d i n g s a n d stock a r r a n g e m e n t ,
n o o n e b u t M o r t o n r e c o r d e d the p i e c e a g a i n f o r t h r e e years. W h e n
1923-35
H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d revisited the p i e c e i n 1928 it b e c a m e the m a i n c o n d u i t
M o r t o n (1923) 1(4) A A B B X Cx Cx Cx' T
t h r o u g h w h i c h " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " passed f r o m the J a z z A g e to the S w i n g
Melrose stock (1924) 1(4) A A B B X C Cx Cx' T
E r a . H e n d e r s o n m a d e three d i f f e r e n t r e c o r d i n g s o f the p i e c e : the revised
M o r t o n (1924) 1(4) A A B B X C Cx Cx' T
v e r s i o n r e c o r d e d i n 1928, the so-called " N e w K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " o f 1932, L a n i n (1925) 1(4) A B B X C C C Cx Cx' T
a n d a n o t h e r revised v e r s i o n o f 1933. I n these r e c o r d i n g s we h e a r his b a n d Creath (1925) 1(4) A A B B X c C Cx Cx Cx' T
t r a n s f o r m the p i e c e f r o m a s t o c k to a h e a d a r r a n g e m e n t , that is, a n M o r t o n (1926) 1(4) A B B X c Cx Cx Cx' T
a r r a n g e m e n t d e v e l o p e d t h r o u g h discussion a n d d e m o n s t r a t i o n w i t h little Henderson (1928) 1(8) A B X c c C C Cx Cx' T
Henderson (1932-33) 1(8) A X c c C C C C Cx Cx' T
o r n o w r i t t e n m u s i c . I n the process, " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " c h a n g e d f r o m a
G o o d m a n (1935) 1(8) A X c c C C C Cx Cx' T
m u l t i s t r a i n rag-based p i e c e to a s t r e a m l i n e d " j a m m i n g " p i e c e for i m p r o v i s -
i n g soloists, a shift g r a p h i c a l l y revealed i n table 2. T o m a k e the c h a n g e , I = Introduction
H e n d e r s o n a n d his s i d e m e n e x t e n d e d M o r t o n ' s riff p r i n c i p l e to the entire A = First strain
p i e c e ; riffs serve as the f o u n d a t i o n f o r the solos. B = Second strain
X = Interlude
W h y d i d H e n d e r s o n r e v i s i t the p i e c e t h r e e years after h i s u n i s s u e d C = Trio
r e c o r d i n g i n 1925? T h a t his n a m e was closely l i n k e d to the p i e c e f r o m the C x = Stomp 1
1930s o n w a r d m a k i n g it s e e m e n t i r e l y n a t u r a l for h i m to have m a d e the C x ' = Stomp 2
p i e c e a c e n t r a l e l e m e n t i n his b a n d ' s b o o k h a s t e n d e d to o v e r s h a d o w T = Tag ending

s o m e p r a c t i c a l e x i g e n c i e s i n 1 9 2 7 - 2 8 . F o r o n e t h i n g , m a n y historians i n -
terpret the late 1920s as a l o w p o i n t for H e n d e r s o n , attributable to D o n
R e d m a n ' s d e p a r t u r e f r o m the b a n d i n J u l y 1927 (see, f o r e x a m p l e , A l l e n a n d M o r t o n were "great friends," at least partly because o f " K i n g P o r t e r
1973:214). R i c h a r d H a d l o c k notes that R e d m a n left a n " e n o r m o u s gap" S t o m p , " as this a r t i c l e ' s e p i g r a p h suggests.
that H e n d e r s o n n e v e r f i l l e d ( 1 9 8 8 : 2 0 5 ) . S i m i l a r l y , S c h u l l e r argues that T h e 1928 r e c o r d i n g o c c u p i e s a p i v o t p o i n t i n the p i e c e ' s b i o g r a p h y ,
R e d m a n was "virtually i r r e p l a c e a b l e " as the "architect o f the b a n d ' s style" o n e that c a n be h e a r d i n at least two c o n t r a s t i n g ways. Retrospectively, it
( 1 9 6 8 : 2 6 7 ) . W i t h R e d m a n g o n e , H e n d e r s o n h a d to seek o u t n e w m a r k s the earliest d o c u m e n t e d stage o f H e n d e r s o n ' s t r a n s f o r m a t i o n o f
a r r a n g e r s a n d a r r a n g e m e n t s , o r resort to o l d ones. Yet, a l t h o u g h R e d m a n ' s the p i e c e . S o it stands as a r o u g h early v e r s i o n o f the a r r a n g e m e n t that
d e p a r t u r e p o s e d a c h a l l e n g e to H e n d e r s o n , the 1928 " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " evolved i n the early 1930s to b e c o m e a n a t i o n a l h i t for B e n n y G o o d m a n i n
reflected a trend i n H e n d e r s o n ' s r e p e r t o i r e that h a d appeared before 1935 a n d a b i g - b a n d s t a n d a r d thereafter. A s I've w r i t t e n elsewhere, listen-
R e d m a n left: p l a y i n g u p d a t e d a r r a n g e m e n t s o f o l d e r pieces. P r e s e n t since i n g to H e n d e r s o n ' s r e c o r d i n g s o f 1 9 2 8 - 3 3 " f r o m a classicized perspective
the early 1920s, the t e n d e n c y h a d escalated i n 1926 w i t h s u c h r e c o r d i n g s o n m u s i c a l c o m p o s i t i o n is l i k e h e a r i n g a s k e t c h d e v e l o p i n t o a f i n i s h e d
as " C l a r i n e t M a r m a l a d e , " "Fidgety Feet," " S e n s a t i o n , " a n d " L i v e r y Stable score" ( M a g e e 1999:68).
B l u e s , " a l l revised versions o f pieces by m e m b e r s o f the O r i g i n a l D i x i e l a n d
Y e t the " s k e t c h " a n a l o g y , h o w e v e r a p t i n r e t r o s p e c t , o b s c u r e s the
J a z z B a n d , as w e l l as " P a n a m a , " " T h e St. L o u i s B l u e s , " " T h e W a n g W a n g
a r r a n g e m e n t ' s basis i n a u r a l , n o t w r i t t e n , m u s i c m a k i n g , a n d the e x c i t i n g ,
B l u e s , " a n d " W a b a s h B l u e s " ( M a g e e 1992:202). It was i n 1926, too, that 10
even r a d i c a l n a t u r e o f H e n d e r s o n ' s r e v i s i o n . S o it takes s o m e effort to
H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d played M o r t o n ' s "The C h a n t " i n a newly p u b l i s h e d
9
h e a r the a r r a n g e m e n t f r o m the c o n t r a s t i n g perspective o f the 1920s. T h e
M e l r o s e stock.
b a n d a n n o u n c e s its d i s t i n c t i v e a p p r o a c h f r o m the o p e n i n g bars, w i t h a
T h e 1928 " K i n g P o r t e r " may also have h a d i m p e t u s f r o m a m o r e p r o x i - n e w eight-bar i n t r o d u c t i o n f e a t u r i n g a fiery t r u m p e t solo by B o b b y Stark
m a t e cause: the c o m p o s e r . M o r t o n was i n N e w Y o r k at this time, a n d , i n (ex. 2 ) . T h e s o l o ' s tone, f i g u r a t i o n , a n d structure f u r t h e r suggest L o u i s
fact, he h a d b e e n i n the C o l u m b i a r e c o r d i n g s t u d i o a day before H e n d e r - A r m s t r o n g as a k i n d o f " m i s s i n g l i n k " i n the piece's e v o l u t i o n . A r m s t r o n g ' s
son's b a n d c a m e there to r e c o r d his p i e c e ( A l l e n 1973:246). W h e t h e r o r t r a d e m a r k s p e r m e a t e the s o l o , i n c l u d i n g the s y n c o p a t e d leaps o f a f o u r t h
n o t H e n d e r s o n e n c o u n t e r e d M o r t o n at this t i m e , by the 1930s F l e t c h e r at the o p e n i n g , characteristic o f A r m s t r o n g ' s solos w i t h H e n d e r s o n three
36 CURRENT MUSICOI.OGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 37

Example 2: " K i n g Porter Stomp," i n t r o d u c t i o n , trumpet solo by Bobby Stark (Fletcher Example 3: " K i n g Porter Stomp," final strain, b e g i n n i n g (Fletcher H e n d e r s o n a n d H i s
Henderson and H i s Orchestra, 1928). Orchestra, 1928) (from Sturm 1995:63).

J f\ 1 1*1
Reeds 9.
AW Di, 7

Brass fa V\7\ (' f 1 m"m 1 * a: t g: >

G Dt G Dl.
Tuba

years earlier (Magee 1992:316, 3 1 9 - 2 0 ) , a n d the b i g , b l a r i n g tone t h r o u g h -


out. T h e w h o l e eight-bar u n i t parses clearly i n t o a p a i r o f p a r a l l e l four-bar o n e o f those l e g e n d a r y sessions p r i z e d for the desperate, u n l i k e l y artistry
phrases, w i t h the r h y t h m o f m e a s u r e s 5 - 6 n e a r l y i d e n t i c a l to that o f o f s t r u g g l i n g b l a c k b a n d s i n the early D e p r e s s i o n years ( o n M o t e n ' s ses-
measures 1-2. T h a t reveals a new sense o f the i m p o r t a n c e o f l i n k i n g a n d s i o n , see S c h u l l e r a n d W i l l i a m s 1983:18). It is this r e c o r d i n g , a l o n g w i t h
r e l a t i n g phrases o f a s o l o , o f the c o h e r e n c e that A r m s t r o n g h a d b r o u g h t H e n d e r s o n ' s " D o w n S o u t h C a m p M e e t i n ' , " that M a r t i n W i l l i a m s a n d
to the j a z z s o l o s i n c e his early days w i t h H e n d e r s o n ( H a r k e r 1999). G u n t h e r S c h u l l e r c h o s e to e x e m p l i f y "the s w i n g b a n d style as it was taken
T h e overall f o r m o f the a r r a n g e m e n t throws greater e m p h a s i s o n the u p by n e a r l y e v e r y o n e else" ( S c h u l l e r a n d W i l l i a m s 1 9 8 3 : 1 4 ) . Y e t the
T r i o a n d S t o m p t h a n ever before, b e g i n n i n g a p a t t e r n that w o u l d e x t e n d r e c o r d i n g ' s h a l l o w e d status belies the h a p h a z a r d c o n d i t i o n s o f its m a k i n g .
i n t o the S w i n g E r a . H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d o m i t s the repeats o f the first a n d J o h n H a m m o n d has w r i t t e n a n a c c o u n t o f the session i n w h i c h the " K i n g
s e c o n d strains, setting a n o t h e r t r e n d that w o u l d b e c o m e s t a n d a r d i z e d i n P o r t e r S t o m p " r e c o r d i n g appears as a n afterthought, s q u e e z e d i n at the
the 1930s. T h e first T r i o hews close to M o r t o n ' s o r i g i n a l m e l o d y ; subse- end:
q u e n t choruses o f the T r i o are used f o r solos b a c k e d by riffs. T h e S t o m p ,
W e were s c h e d u l e d f o r t e n o ' c l o c k o n a F r i d a y m o r n i n g , a s t a n d a r d
o n the o t h e r h a n d , b e c o m e s the place for the w h o l e b a n d to s h i n e . I n the
1928 r e c o r d i n g , the b a n d r u n s t h r o u g h the S t o m p j u s t o n c e , b u t that cho- t h r e e - h o u r r e c o r d i n g session, w h i c h m e a n t we h a d to be t h r o u g h by
rus w o u l d b e c o m e the m o s t f a m o u s o f a l l , the call-and-response c h o r u s o n e . A t t e n o n F r i d a y two m u s i c i a n s w e r e i n the s t u d i o . A t 12:15
that S c h u l l e r (1968:268) has t e r m e d "the s i n g l e m o s t i n f l u e n t i a l e n s e m b l e J o h n K i r b y s h o w e d u p w i t h his bass, f o l l o w e d shortly by the rest of
i d e a i n the e n t i r e s w i n g era" (ex. 3). the b a n d . W e c u t t h r e e sides i n less t h a n forty-five m i n u t e s , two o f
w h i c h were masters acceptable for release: " U n d e r n e a t h the H a r l e m
W h i l e m a n y ideas a n t i c i p a t e s t a n d a r d s w i n g a r r a n g i n g p r a c t i c e , the
M o o n " a n d " H o n e y s u c k l e R o s e . " T h e t h i r d side, " N e w K i n g P o r t e r
r h y t h m s e c t i o n m a r k s this as a 1920s r e c o r d i n g . T w o i n s t r u m e n t s i n partic-
S t o m p , " we c o u l d play t h r o u g h o n l y o n c e . ( H a m m o n d 1977:67)
u l a r signify the r e c o r d i n g ' s twenties v i n t a g e : the t u b a , m o s t l y p l u g g i n g
alternate beats (one a n d t h r e e ) , a n d the banjo, s t r u m m i n g a steady four-
T h e session p r o d u c e d a s i n g l e C o l u m b i a d i s k , f e a t u r i n g " H o n e y s u c k l e
beat p a t t e r n . C l o s e l i s t e n i n g also reveals a haze o f r i d e c y m b a l a n d h i g h
R o s e " o n o n e side a n d " H a r l e m M o o n " o n the o t h e r . " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p "
h a t w o r k , i n c l u d i n g a c y m b a l h i t after the f i n a l c a d e n c e a t r a d e m a r k o f
f o u n d its way o n t o a l o w - b u d g e t O k e h r e c o r d i n g b a c k e d by a C l a r e n c e
H e n d e r s o n ' s d r u m m e r , J o s e p h "Kaiser" M a r s h a l l , since 1923. T h e w h o l e
W i l l i a m s - l e d " n o n u n i o n j u g band" (ibid.:68).
r e c o r d i n g lopes a l o n g at a r o u n d 180 beats p e r m i n u t e , a p p r o x i m a t e l y the
Yet, f r o m H a m m o n d ' s perspective, "the session was o n e o f the m o s t sat-
same t e m p o as H e n d e r s o n ' s f o r m e r c o m p e t i t o r , S a m L a n i n , h a d t a k e n it
isfying I have ever h a d a n y t h i n g to d o w i t h . " H e a t t r i b u t e d the results, i n
i n 1925. R h y t h m i c a l l y , the 1928 v e r s i o n l o o k s n o t f o r w a r d b u t b a c k w a r d .
part, to what h a d a p p e a r e d to be liabilities: the t i m e a n d space constraints
W h e n H e n d e r s o n r e c o r d e d the p i e c e a g a i n o n D e c e m b e r 9, 1932, it p l a c e d o n the event by the s t u d i o a n d the m u s i c i a n s themselves. "Perhaps
was issued u n d e r a revised title: the " N e w K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . " T h a t day's to m a k e a m e n d s for t h e i r casual b e h a v i o r , " H a m m o n d r e c a l l e d , "the m u s i -
r e c o r d i n g session has b e c o m e l i k e the session o f B e n n i e M o t e n ' s Kansas cians really p u t o u t i n the s h o r t t i m e available to us. T h e s t u d i o was s m a l l ,
C i t y O r c h e s t r a that p r o d u c e d " T o b y " a n d " M o t e n S w i n g " f o u r days later the b a n d setup i n t i m a t e t h e k i n d o f c o n d i t i o n s i n w h i c h m u s i c i a n s c a n
38 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 39

r e a l l y h e a r a n d feel w h a t e a c h m a n is d o i n g . T h e results w e r e s u p e r b " i n g to S a n d y W i l l i a m s , w h o w o u l d s o o n be p l a y i n g the p i e c e w i t h B o b b y


(ibid.:67). Stark i n C h i c k W e b b ' s b a n d , o n C h r i s t m a s n i g h t at the A p o l l o T h e a t e r , "I
T h i s " K i n g P o r t e r " is "new" i n m a n y respects. T h e b a n d q u i c k e n e d the c o u n t e d the c h o r u s e s I p l a y e d o n ' K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p ' t w e n t y - t h r e e .
t e m p o to 210 beats p e r m i n u t e . T h e string bass (played by K i r b y ) a n d g u i - B o b b y Stark a n d I c o u l d play as m a n y choruses as we felt l i k e o n that, so
tar ( F r e d d y W h i t e ) i m p a r t a lightness a n d f o r w a r d m o m e n t u m far f r o m l o n g as e a c h c h o r u s was a little m o r e e x c i t i n g . T h a t was our t u n e " ( D a n c e
the c o m p a r a t i v e l y heavy, "vertical" t r e a d o f the 1920s tuba-banjo c o m b i n a - 2 0 0 1 : 6 9 - 7 1 ) . A c c o u n t s l i k e W i l l i a m s ' s are r e m i n d e r s that p a r t o f " K i n g
t i o n . F o r m a l l y , the n e w v e r s i o n makes a decisive shift t o w a r d the T r i o a n d Porter"'s a p p e a l c a m e f r o m things that were never c a p t u r e d o n a p r i n t e d
S t o m p : the b a n d o m i t s the rag-like s e c o n d strain entirely, adds two solo page, a s o u n d r e c o r d i n g , o r any o t h e r m e d i a .
choruses to the T r i o , a n d creates a new S t o m p strain a c t i n g as a n intensive A t r a n s c r i p t i o n a n d analysis o f the 1933 r e c o r d i n g by Dave J o n e s a n d
b u i l d - u p to the f i n a l call-and-response s h o u t c h o r u s , w h i c h n o w features J a m e s D a p o g n y a l l o w f o r a closer l o o k , r e v e a l i n g several things. First, they
s a x o p h o n e s i n p l a c e o f the o u t m o d e d c l a r i n e t t r i o . H o w a r d S p r i n g (1997) notate a n d discuss the e x c e p t i o n a l solos o f C o l e m a n H a w k i n s a n d R e d
has c o n v i n c i n g l y a r g u e d that the differences b e t w e e n H e n d e r s o n ' s first A l l e n . B o t h soloists d e m o n s t r a t e a n u n c a n n y ability to "float against the
a n d s e c o n d " K i n g P o r t e r " r e c o r d i n g s may partly be e x p l a i n e d by the devel- r h y t h m , " to create a n d sustain " m o t i v i c c o h e r e n c e " apart f r o m the o r i g i -
o p m e n t o f the L i n d y H o p i n the late 1920s a n d early 1930s. n a l m e l o d y , a n d , i n g e n e r a l , they reveal " i m p r o v i s e r s t h i n k i n g c o m p o s i -
D e s p i t e f u n d a m e n t a l c h a n g e s , however, it r e m a i n s a " h e a d " arrange- tionally." S e c o n d , they reveal "many s m a l l d i s a g r e e m e n t s a m o n g m e m b e r s
m e n t whose basic structure, p r o c e s s i o n o f solos, riff f o u n d a t i o n , a n d c l i - o f the b a n d a b o u t what notes a n d r h y t h m s to play a n d h o w to play t h e m , "
m a c t i c a n t i p h o n y r e m a i n intact f r o m 1928. W i t h the s e c o n d strain's omis- r e i n f o r c i n g the n o t i o n that e v e n five years after his b a n d ' s first i s s u e d
s i o n a n d the T r i o a n d S t o m p ' s e x p a n s i o n , the first strain n o w s o u n d s l i k e r e c o r d i n g o f the p i e c e , H e n d e r s o n ' s " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " r e m a i n e d u n n o -
a n e x t e n s i o n o f the i n t r o d u c t i o n : a n i n t r o d u c t i o n to a series o f solos over tated, a " h e a d " a r r a n g e m e n t "made collectively by the b a n d m e m b e r s a n d
a r i f f f o u n d a t i o n . T h a t f o u n d a t i o n , p o u r e d i n 1928, n o w s o l i d i f i e s i n played from memory" (Dapogny a n d Jones n.d.:n.p.).
H e n d e r s o n ' s 1932 a n d 1933 r e c o r d i n g s . U n d e r Stark's first-Trio s o l o , the
s a x o p h o n e s play a s y n c o p a t e d v a r i a t i o n o n M o r t o n ' s o r i g i n a l T r i o m e l o d y , Goodman's Stomp: A Score
w h i c h h a d b e e n i n the f o r e g r o u n d i n H e n d e r s o n ' s 1928 r e c o r d i n g . C o l e - A f t e r p l a y i n g a j o b i n D e t r o i t ' s G r a y s t o n e B a l l r o o m i n N o v e m b e r 1934,
m a n H a w k i n s ' s s o l o a p p e a r s over a four-note s y n c o p a t e d brass riff. T h e H e n d e r s o n failed to pay his s i d e m e n . T h e a c c u m u l a t e d u n c e r t a i n t i e s o f
first c h o r u s o f J . C . H i g g i n b o t h a m ' s t r o m b o n e s o l o is a c c o m p a n i e d by a getting a regular paycheck in H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d took their toll a n d
f a l l i n g - t h i r d s figure i n the s a x o p h o n e s that h a d its o r i g i n s u n d e r J i m m y H e n d e r s o n ' s entire b a n d q u i t e n masse, many o f t h e m to j o i n B e n n y C a r t e r
H a r r i s o n ' s t r o m b o n e s o l o i n 1928. back i n N e w York (Allen 1973:300-1). M e a n w h i l e , B e n n y G o o d m a n ' s
B y 1933, the riff f o u n d a t i o n has b e c o m e m o r e p r o n o u n c e d . N o w , the f l e d g l i n g c a r e e r as a b a n d l e a d e r was s h a p i n g u p to b e c o m e p e r m a n e n t .
r e c o r d i n g b a l a n c e shifts so that the solos interact with the riffs r a t h e r t h a n O n D e c e m b e r 1, 1934, G o o d m a n b e g a n l e a d i n g his b a n d o n the " L e t ' s
s o a r i n g above t h e m . T h e b a n d retains the basic structure f r o m 1932 w h i l e D a n c e " r a d i o p r o g r a m . It was b i l l e d as a " d a n c e party" every S a t u r d a y
c h a n g i n g some o f its contents. H e n r y " R e d " A l l e n ' s t r u m p e t s o l o fills the n i g h t a n d w o u l d be h e a r d across the c o u n t r y , b u t t h e r e was also a large
two-chorus slot, previously taken by J . C . H i g g i n b o t h a m , p r e c e d i n g the en- s t u d i o a u d i e n c e , f o r N B C ' s s t u d i o 8 H c o u l d seat a r o u n d o n e t h o u s a n d
s e m b l e out-choruses. M o r t o n ' s o r i g i n a l t r i o m e l o d y , suggested i n the saxo- p e o p l e (Firestone 1993:106). A l t h o u g h " L e t ' s D a n c e " lasted o n l y twenty-
p h o n e s ' v a r i a t i o n o f it u n d e r Stark's solo, c o m e s to the fore i n a c l a r i n e t six weeks, it s h a p e d the careers o f B e n n y G o o d m a n a n d , by e x t e n s i o n ,
solo (by e i t h e r H i l t o n Jefferson o r Russell P r o c o p e ) i n the n e x t T r i o strain. F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n i n s e v e r a l i m p o r t a n t ways, a n d i t h e l p e d seal the
B y the late 1920s, p u b l i c p e r f o r m a n c e p r a c t i c e h a d d e p a r t e d f r o m c a n o n i c destiny o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " i n the twentieth century.
r e c o r d i n g p r a c t i c e , w h i c h h a d to fit the a r r a n g e m e n t i n t o the t h r e e to As a c o m m e r c i a l l y s p o n s o r e d network radio p r o g r a m , "Let's D a n c e "
three-and-a-half m i n u t e l i m i t o f a 7 8 - r p m r e c o r d . C r i t i c s W i l d e r H o b s o n was a p o t e n t i a l g o l d m i n e i n the m u s i c industry. N e t w o r k r a d i o was less
a n d O t i s F e r g u s o n n o t e d that H e n d e r s o n ' s r e c o r d i n g s give few c l u e s t h a n a d e c a d e o l d , a n d c o m m e r c i a l s p o n s o r s h i p h a d o n l y recently t a k e n
a b o u t h o w the b a n d s o u n d e d i n p u b l i c . F e w o f the r e c o r d i n g s , n o t e d h o l d as the c h i e f m e a n s o f p r o m o t i n g r a d i o , a p h e n o m e n o n v a l i d a t e d by
H o b s o n , "give a n y t h i n g l i k e the g o l d e n , s e e t h i n g s p i r i t o f a F l e t c h e r the C o m m u n i c a t i o n s A c t o f 1934 ( S m u l y a n 1994:167). L i v e m u s i c o n ra-
H e n d e r s o n o c c a s i o n " ( H o b s o n 1962; cf. F e r g u s o n 1982:57). A n d a c c o r d - d i o , o f course, was n o t a n e w p h e n o m e n o n . A s early as 1924, for e x a m p l e ,
40 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 41

H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d c o u l d be h e a r d p l a y i n g at the R o s e l a n d B a l l r o o m o n
w h i c h b e g a n w i t h F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n i n the 1920's, has b e e n b r o u g h t a
W H N N e w Y o r k , a n d r a d i o stations c a r r i e d m a n y o t h e r b a n d s a n d singers
successful c o n c l u s i o n o n l y by the b e b o p p e r s (Russell 1959:202). A c t u a l l y ,
o n "sustaining p r o g r a m s , " that is, o n - l o c a t i o n broadcasts f r o m hotels, b a l l -
H e n d e r s o n h a d a d a p t e d a n d r e a r r a n g e d stock a r r a n g e m e n t s i n the 1920s
r o o m s , a n d n i g h t c l u b s t h r o u g h o u t the 1920s. S u c h p r o g r a m s c e r t a i n l y
( M a g e e 1992), so it was n o t so m u c h the "first t i m e " that a r r a n g e r s h a d
e x p a n d e d a m u s i c i a n ' s a u d i e n c e i n a way that h a d b e e n i m p o s s i b l e before
b r o k e n away f r o m p u b l i s h e r s ' a r r a n g e m e n t s o f p o p u l a r songs as it was the
the advent o f r a d i o i n 1920. B u t the m o r e r e c e n t c o m m e r c i a l l y s p o n s o r e d
first t i m e i n the early 1930s that w h i t e b a n d s i n p a r t i c u l a r h a d d e p a r t e d
p r o g r a m s g u a r a n t e e d a b r o a d n a t i o n a l a u d i e n c e o n a r e g u l a r basis. A s
f r o m what p u b l i s h e r s h a d p r o v i d e d .
D a v i d W . Stowe has n o t e d , these were the c h o i c e j o b s , b r i n g i n g u n p r e c e -
A t this p o i n t , H e n d e r s o n finally c o m m i t t e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " to pa-
d e n t e d prestige a n d r e m u n e r a t i o n . S u c h p r o g r a m s were "the s w i n g i n d u s -
per, a n d i n this f o r m it b e c a m e the first F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n a r r a n g e m e n t
try's greatest p r i z e " a n d the " p r i m a r y m e a n s by w h i c h a b a n d a n d its
i n G o o d m a n ' s b o o k . ( A t the same t i m e , G o o d m a n also a c q u i r e d F l e t c h e r ' s
agency f o u n d a n d p r e p a r e d its a u d i e n c e " (Stowe 1 9 9 4 : 1 0 8 - 9 ) .
b r o t h e r H o r a c e ' s " B i g J o h n S p e c i a l . " ) Y e t the a r r a n g e m e n t that
" L e t ' s D a n c e " also a l l o w e d G o o d m a n to e x p a n d h i s r e p e r t o i r e a n d H e n d e r s o n gave G o o d m a n i n late 1934 o r early 1935 was n o t s i m p l y a
style. T h e p r o g r a m ' s f o r m a t c a l l e d for t h r e e b a n d s to play t h i r t y - m i n u t e t r a n s c r i p t i o n o f the v e r s i o n his o w n b a n d h a d p l a y e d . It i n t r o d u c e s several
sets i n a l t e r n a t i o n , b e g i n n i n g w i t h K e l M u r r a y a n d H i s O r c h e s t r a p l a y i n g slight b u t t e l l i n g changes. F o r e x a m p l e , H e n d e r s o n e n h a n c e d the riff ac-
sweet d a n c e m u s i c (to use the p a r l a n c e o f the era, w h e n "sweet" a n d "hot" c o m p a n i m e n t i n the o p e n i n g strain to i n c l u d e incisive e x c h a n g e s b e t w e e n
d e s i g n a t e d the r a n g e o f p o p u l a r d a n c e m u s i c ) , c o n t i n u i n g w i t h X a v i e r the brass a n d s a x o p h o n e s , w h e r e before there h a d o n l y b e e n s a x o p h o n e s
C u g a t ' s o r c h e s t r a p l a y i n g L a t i n - t i n g e d m u s i c ( o n the crest o f a r u m b a fad (exx. 4 a n d 5 ) . I n a d d i t i o n , the revised a r r a n g e m e n t f o r G o o d m a n also re-
i n the early 1930s), a n d e n d i n g with G o o d m a n ' s b a n d p l a y i n g "hot," jazz- stores M o r t o n ' s T r i o m e l o d y to the f o r e g r o u n d i n the first T r i o ; the
oriented music. T h e j o b came with an allowance for eight arrangements m e l o d y r e t a i n s the s y n c o p a t e d c h a r a c t e r t h a t H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d h a d
p e r week i n the first t h i r t e e n weeks, r e d u c e d to f o u r p e r week w h e n the b r o u g h t to it i n its e a r l i e r r e c o r d i n g s , b u t it n o l o n g e r a c c o m p a n i e s a
s h o w was r e n e w e d f o r a s e c o n d t h i r t e e n - w e e k p e r i o d i n late F e b r u a r y t r u m p e t s o l o . H e n d e r s o n also recast the p e n u l t i m a t e c h o r u s . I n 1933,
( H a m m o n d 1 9 7 7 : 1 0 8 - 9 ) . G o o d m a n cast a b o u t f o r a r r a n g e r s h e c o u l d call H e n d e r s o n h a d f e a t u r e d a r i p p l i n g , t r i p l e t s a x o p h o n e riff (with p i q u a n t
o n a n d w o r k w i t h . I n search o f a distinctive s o u n d , a n d w i t h J o h n H a m - brass dissonances) f l o w i n g r i g h t o u t o f the e n d o f R e d A l l e n ' s t r u m p e t
m o n d ' s e n c o u r a g e m e n t , G o o d m a n sought o u t b l a c k a r r a n g e r s to give his solo (ex. 6). I n contrast, the 1935 r e c o r d i n g featured a full e n s e m b l e c h o r u s
style the s h o t o f j a z z that the j o b r e q u i r e d . A m o n g m a n y p o s s i b i l i t i e s , based o n a c l i m b i n g s y n c o p a t e d figure (ex. 7 ) .
H e n d e r s o n s t r u g g l i n g to m a k e ends m e e t a n d w i t h m o r e t h a n a d e c a d e
T o s o m e e x t e n t these differences reveal the m o r e f u n d a m e n t a l distinc-
o f d a n c e - b a n d e x p e r i e n c e b e h i n d h i m s t o o d o u t as a n a t u r a l c h o i c e to
t i o n b e t w e e n the versions p l a y e d by H e n d e r s o n a n d the v e r s i o n p l a y e d by
take o n m u c h o f the a r r a n g i n g w o r k , s o m e t i m e s d o i n g as m a n y as t h r e e a
G o o d m a n : H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d p l a y e d a "head" a r r a n g e m e n t thatdespite
week (Firestone 1993:109-10, 116).
f u n d a m e n t a l s i m i l a r i t i e s a m o n g the 1928, 1932, a n d 1933 versionswas
A n entire n e t w o r k show f e a t u r i n g h o t m u s i c w o u l d have b e e n c o m m e r - n e v e r p l a y e d the same way twice. G o o d m a n ' s b a n d , o n the o t h e r h a n d ,
cially unfeasible before A u g u s t 1935, b u t w i t h the p r e s e n c e o f M u r r a y a n d c l e a r l y plays a n a r r a n g e m e n t t h a t has b e e n f u l l y w r i t t e n d o w n , e x c e p t
C u g a t h e w i n g closer to the m e l o d i e s o f the tunes they p l a y e d , G o o d m a n for the solos. T h e " m a n y s m a l l d i s a g r e e m e n t s " b e t w e e n the H e n d e r s o n
was freer to d e p a r t f r o m t h e m . J o h n H a m m o n d has stressed this p o i n t : r e c o r d i n g s o f 1932 a n d 1933 w o u l d n o t be a l l o w e d b y the f a s t i d i o u s
" T h e liberties G o o d m a n was a l l o w e d o n L e t ' s D a n c e , " he r e c a l l e d , "were G o o d m a n a n d his well-rehearsed b a n d . U n d e r G o o d m a n ' s auspices, " K i n g
m a d e p o s s i b l e b e c a u s e C u g a t a n d K e l M u r r a y were p l a y i n g i n straight, P o r t e r S t o m p " c o a l e s c e d i n t o a score whose r e c o r d e d p e r f o r m a n c e s , espe-
c o m m e r c i a l f a s h i o n . B y the t i m e B e n n y c a m e o n the a i r h e c o u l d play cially the m u c h a n t h o l o g i z e d J u l y 1, 1935, v e r s i o n , g l e a m w i t h p o l i s h a n d
his o w n way." H a m m o n d also e m p h a s i z e d the i m p o r t a n c e o f the show's s p a r k l e w i t h vitality. " [ O J n e o f the biggest k i c k s I've ever h a d i n m u s i c
b u d g e t a l l o w i n g G o o d m a n to c o m m i s s i o n n e w a r r a n g e m e n t s , w h i c h b r o k e [was] to go t h r o u g h these scores a n d d i g the m u s i c o u t o f t h e m , even i n
"the s t r a n g l e h o l d m u s i c p u b l i s h e r s h a d o n the p e r f o r m a n c e o f p o p u l a r r e h e a r s a l , " G o o d m a n n o t e d i n his 1939 a u t o b i o g r a p h y ( G o o d m a n a n d
songs" (1977:109). K o l o d i n 1961:147). J o h n H a m m o n d , w h o s t o o d i n a u n i q u e p o s i t i o n to
Ross Russell later m a d e a s i m i l a r p o i n t i n a m o r e e v o l u t i o n a r y a n d e m - a p p r e c i a t e what b o t h H e n d e r s o n a n d G o o d m a n d i d w i t h the p i e c e , r e c o g -
p h a t i c tone: " [ T ] h e war against the h o r r i b l e p r o d u c t s o f the tunesmiths, n i z e d the m u s i c a l a n d c u l t u r a l i m p o r t o f G o o d m a n ' s v e r s i o n . I n his words,
42 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 43

Example 4: " K i n g Porter Stomp," first strain, m m . 9-16 (Fletcher H e n d e r s o n a n d H i s Example 5: " K i n g Porter Stomp," first strain, m. 9-16 (Henderson arrangement for Benny
m

Orchestra, 1933, transcribed by James Dapogny and Dave Jones). G o o d m a n , transcription i n Benny G o o d m a n Collection, Yale Universitv).

Trumpet solo Trumpet solo


1
R

Saxophones Saxophones

: * 1 L - -

Trumpets

At F7 B!>m Btm

'

' A , i, L m - i , .P= i I *~i i >w , 1


H<H m J M ^1 1 _
CM)
1
I^TS S i d^J- ' c - ha B i i l H Jm 0\_ J? v J Al>6 Gi>6 F7 Btm7
'q -riji/j.
a

Dt D7 At. F7 B!>7 Et7 Al

Tpls.
G o o d m a n ' s v e r s i o n "is s o m e t h i n g o f a l a n d m a r k i n w h i t e j a z z circles. It is
the first time, to m y k n o w l e d g e , that a large w h i t e o r c h e s t r a has s u c c e e d e d
i n c a p t u r i n g the attack a n d f r e e d o m o f the best c o l o u r e d b a n d s " ( q u o t e d
i n E r e n b e r g 1998:74, f r o m a H a m m o n d article i n Melody Maker that ap-
p e a r e d before G o o d m a n ' s c o m m e r c i a l r e c o r d i n g s o f " K i n g P o r t e r " [ M a y 28,
1935]).

DI-6 Dlm6 Al>6 F7 B!>9 EW GI.6 G6 Ab6


Swing Standard
G o o d m a n ' s success w i t h " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " seems to have p r o m p t e d
m a n y o t h e r bands to r e c o r d it: the n u m b e r o f r e c o r d i n g s o f the p i e c e rose
s i g n i f i c a n t l y after 1 9 3 5 . T a b l e 1 p r e s e n t s a n o u t l i n e o f " K i n g P o r t e r A m o n g these r e c o r d i n g s stand m a n y nearly f o r g o t t e n treasures o f the
S t o m p " ' s b i o g r a p h y t h r o u g h m o s t o f the S w i n g E r a . A l t h o u g h t h e b a n d s S w i n g E r a . D u r i n g the same p e r i o d i n early 1936, w h e n Stanley D a n c e p r o -
o f C a b Calloway, I s h a m J o n e s , C l a u d e H o p k i n s , a n d u n d o u b t e d l y others, m o t e d " c u t t i n g " contests between the G o o d m a n a n d C h i c k W e b b orches-
p l a y e d t h e piece b e f o r e G o o d m a n , the table illustrates d r a m a t i c a l l y that tras, f o r e x a m p l e , W e b b ' s b a n d r e c o r d e d what m i g h t be the fastest " K i n g
G o o d m a n ' s r e c o r d i n g a n d p e r f o r m a n c e s i n 1935 l a u n c h e d a n e w phase P o r t e r " o n r e c o r d . T h e a r r a n g e m e n t is clearly d e r i v e d f r o m H e n d e r s o n ' s ,
i n the piece's history, w h e n it b e c a m e a s t a n d a r d a m o n g b i g bands. I n that b u t its t e m p o is n o t . P l a y e d at m o r e than 2 6 0 beats p e r m i n u t e , W e b b ' s
year, the piece's t r i c k l i n g r e c o r d i n g history b e c a m e a steady stream, w i t h " K i n g P o r t e r " c l e a r l y "cuts" t h e G o o d m a n b a n d i n s h e e r s p e e d . A year
several b i g - b a n d versions m i x e d with a notable revival o f interest i n later, the T e d d y H i l l O r c h e s t r a r e c o r d e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . " It t o o b o r -
r e c o r d i n g the o r i g i n a l p i a n o v e r s i o n by its c o m p o s e r . rows heavily f r o m t h e H e n d e r s o n a r r a n g e m e n t a n d offers several n o v e l
44 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY
JEFFREY M A G E E 45

Example 6: " K i n g Porter Stomp," penultimate strain riff (Fletcher H e n d e r s o n and H i ;


I n the m e a n t i m e , its c o m p o s e r had fallen i n t o obscurity. B e t w e e n 1930
Orchestra, 1933, transcribed by James Dapogny and Dave Jones).
a n d 1938 M o r t o n a p p e a r e d o n o n l y o n e r e c o r d i n g . H e h a d b e c o m e per-
sonally a l i e n a t e d f r o m the y o u n g e r j a z z m u s i c i a n s f r o m N e w Y o r k (with
Saxophones the e x c e p t i o n , apparently, o f F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n ) , a n d h e suffered f i n a n -
cial p r o b l e m s , i l l h e a l t h , a n d fear o f a v o o d o o curse ( D a p o g n y 1 9 8 2 : 2 1 -
22). B e g i n n i n g w i t h the L i b r a r y o f C o n g r e s s r e c o r d i n g s , M o r t o n m a d e five
m o r e r e c o r d s o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " f r o m 1938 to 1940. B y t h e n , his play-
i n g style was at least twenty years out-of-date, b u t his r e c o r d i n g s reveal it to
be even m o r e e x u b e r a n t a n d vital. H i g h - r e g i s t e r octave flares s i g n a l the
b e g i n n i n g s o f phrases, left-hand figures inject s u d d e n accents, the r i g h t
h a n d f r e q u e n t l y leaps a m o n g registersall r e v e a l i n g a n e w mastery a n d
an u n p r e c e d e n t e d f r e e d o m a n d flexibility. W e ' v e seen h o w M o r t o n ' s riffs
a n d structure c o n t i n u e d to shape b i g - b a n d versions i n t o the 1930s, b u t the
i n f l u e n c e also w o r k e d the o t h e r way. I n h i s 1939 r e c o r d i n g o f " K i n g
Example 7: " K i n g Porter Stomp," penultimate strain riff ( H e n d e r s o n arrangement for
P o r t e r S t o m p " ( a n t h o l o g i z e d o n the Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz),
Benny G o o d m a n , Benny G o o d m a n Collection, Yale University).
M o r t o n shows his awareness o f the a r r a n g e m e n t , because h e r e for the first
t i m e h e leaps a m o n g registers i n a p i a n i s t i c v e r s i o n o f call-and-response.
Saxophones
I n the L o m a x interviews, M o r t o n h a d said, "no j a z z p i a n o player c a n really
p l a y g o o d j a z z unless they try to give a n i m i t a t i o n o f a b a n d " ( L o m a x
1 9 9 3 : 7 9 ) . E x a m p l e 8 shows the c l o s i n g bars o f w h a t m i g h t be c a l l e d
Trumpets M o r t o n ' s "band" version of " K i n g Porter Stomp."

A l t h o u g h M o r t o n r e c o r d e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " m o r e t h a n any o f his


works, n o single m u s i c i a n d e m o n s t r a t e d a m o r e sustained a n d p u b l i c c o m -
m i t m e n t to the p i e c e t h a n B e n n y G o o d m a n . O v e r his half-century career
as a b a n d l e a d e r , G o o d m a n r e t u r n e d to H e n d e r s o n ' s a r r a n g e m e n t o f

m
" K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " a g a i n a n d a g a i n , m o r e t h a n a l m o s t any b i g - b a n d
1 1
c h a r t i n his sizeable b o o k . It was the first F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n arrange-
Gl.6 DI.6 Dt.7 m e n t he r e c e i v e d f r o m H e n d e r s o n , a n d o n e o f the last he ever p l a y e d i n
p u b l i c , at h i s f i n a l c o n c e r t at W o l f T r a p i n V i e n n a , V i r g i n i a , a week before
his d e a t h i n J u n e 1986. T h e p i e c e served a p a r t i c u l a r f u n c t i o n for h i m ,
what m i g h t be c a l l e d the "hot slot," since w h e n e v e r h e p l a y e d it o n r a d i o ,
t e l e v i s i o n , a n d c o n c e r t p r o g r a m s i t o f t e n s e r v e d as a c l i m a c t i c c l o s e r ,
ideas as w e l l . M o s t notably, H i l l ' s r e c o r d i n g features a n e w four-bar i n t r o - e i t h e r for the first h a l f o f the p r o g r a m o r for the e n t i r e p r o g r a m , usually
d u c t i o n ( d u r i n g a p e r i o d w h e n almost all bands played a version o f f o l l o w e d by e i t h e r a n i n t e r m i s s i o n o r the b a n d ' s sign-off t h e m e , " G o o d b y e "
H e n d e r s o n ' s eight-bar o p e n i n g ) , f o l l o w e d by a two-bar b r e a k a n d the first ( C o n n o r 1988:passim).
strain solo featuring H i l l ' s nineteen-year-old t r u m p e t player, J o h n Birks A r e c o r d i n g issued i n 1986 preserves a televised p e r f o r m a n c e f r o m the
G i l l e s p i e , i n his first r e c o r d e d solo. p r e v i o u s y e a r f e a t u r i n g G o o d m a n ' s b a n d p l a y i n g several H e n d e r s o n
T h e b a n d r e c o r d i n g s after H e n d e r s o n ' s tell part o f the same story: that a r r a n g e m e n t s , i n c l u d i n g " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . " I n this p e r f o r m a n c e the
the H e n d e r s o n a r r a n g e m e n t was the p r e v a i l i n g a p p r o a c h to " K i n g P o r t e r b a n d h a r k s b a c k to the 1935 s c o r e . T h e t r u m p e t soloist, L a u r i e F r i n k ,
S t o m p " i n the 1930s a n d 1940s. M o r e o v e r , c o n s i d e r i n g that n o b a n d be- recreates B u n n y B e r i g a n ' s f a m o u s s o l o i n the i n t r o d u c t i o n a n d first strain,
sides H e n d e r s o n ' s r e c o r d e d the p i e c e b e t w e e n s p r i n g 1925 a n d fall 1934, a n d the same riffs a p p e a r u n d e r this a n d o t h e r solos. T h e last two c h o -
it is safe to say that H e n d e r s o n saved the p i e c e f r o m obscurity. ruses f e a t u r e the same e n s e m b l e a r r a n g e m e n t as the 1935 r e c o r d i n g s .
46 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 47

Example 8: " K i n g Porter Stomp," final strain (Ferdinand "Jelly R o l l " M o r t o n , 1939, from
A c o u p l e o f " K i n g Porter"-related tunes p r e c e d e d the Swing E r a .
Dapogny 1982:504).
M o r t o n ' s o w n " H y e n a S t o m p " c o m p r i s e s several variations o n the S t o m p
u n d e r n e a t h t h e l a u g h i n g h y e n a antics o f L e w L a M a r ( V i c t o r , C h i c a g o ,
J u n e 4, 1927: The Jelly Roll Morton Centennial: His Complete Victor Recordings,
R C A B l u e b i r d 2 3 6 1 - 2 - R B ) . T h i s r e c o r d i n g c o m e s as close as we c a n get to
h e a r i n g h o w M o r t o n m i g h t have a r r a n g e d " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " f o r h i s
1 2
o w n b a n d . O n e o f M o r t o n ' s f r e q u e n t s i d e m e n , J o h n n y D o d d s , also wrote
a p a r t i a l " K i n g P o r t e r " contrafact, the l a n g u o r o u s " I n d i g o S t o m p , " w h i c h
c o m b i n e s twelve-bar b l u e s c h o r u s e s a n d strains b a s e d o n t h e S t o m p
progression.
T h e p i e c e has a t t r a c t e d several m o d e r n j a z z m u s i c i a n s as w e l l . J o h n
L e w i s c o m p o s e d at least two p i e c e s b a s e d o n " K i n g P o r t e r " : " G o l d e n
Striker" a n d " O d d s Against T o m o r r o w . " W h e n asked what he f o u n d i n -
M e a n w h i l e , the e n s e m b l e s o u n d s r e m a r k a b l y g o o d b e t t e r , i n s o m e ways, t r i g u i n g a b o u t t h e p i e c e , Lewis r e s p o n d e d i n a way that typified his gener-
t h a n t h e 1935 b a n d . T h e s a x o p h o n e s a r e m i l k y r i c h a n d s m o o t h , w i t h a t i o n o f j a z z m u s i c i a n s . " W h a t m a d e ' K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p ' i n t e r e s t i n g to
carefully t a p e r e d p h r a s e e n d i n g s . T h e brass are n o t as harshly b r i g h t as m e , " h e said, "was n o t a p e r f o r m a n c e by J e l l y R o l l M o r t o n o r what I h e a r d
the 1 9 3 5 - 3 6 b a n d ' s brass. A n d t h e d r u m m e r has a l i g h t e r t o u c h t h a n f r o m h i m , b u t what F l e t c h e r H e n d e r s o n d i d . H e r e c o m p o s e d t h e p i e c e .
G e n e K r u p a d i d . M o r e t h a n a n artifact d e m o n s t r a t i n g a c o n t i n u o u s per- T h a t ' s what's i m p o r t a n t " ( L e w i s 1987). I n 1958, G i l E v a n s m a d e a n e w
f o r m a n c e t r a d i t i o n , G o o d m a n ' s 1985 P B S p e r f o r m a n c e shows that " K i n g a r r a n g e m e n t o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " f o r his eighteen-piece o r c h e s t r a f o r
P o r t e r S t o m p " c o u l d s o u n d fresh a h a l f a c e n t u r y after it h a d l a u n c h e d the his a l b u m New Bottle/Old Wine. T h e a l b u m ' s title aptly captures t h e spirit o f
Swing Era. Evans's " K i n g P o r t e r , " w h i c h takes shards o f M o r t o n ' s o r i g i n a l ( M o r t o n ' s
second strain, w h i c h the Swing E r a h a d discarded, i n a quasi-Dixieland
New Bottles, O l d Wine setting, a n d M o r t o n ' s first s t o m p s t r a i n i n a style c l o s e r to the o r i g i n a l
T h e p i e c e ' s r e c o r d i n g h i s t o r y e x t e n d s far b e y o n d r e c o r d s b e a r i n g its t h a n to a n y b i g - b a n d setting) as w e l l as a l l u s i o n s to H e n d e r s o n ' s arrange-
n a m e . S e v e r a l b a n d s d e v e l o p e d a n d r e c o r d e d " K i n g P o r t e r " contrafacts m e n t (most clearly i n the p i c k u p s to the final c h o r u s a n d the a p p r o a c h to
based o n the S t o m p s t r a i n u s i n g the " b a c k g r o u n d s " o f " K i n g P o r t e r , " as the final c a d e n c e ) , a n d casts t h e m i n a n a d v a n c e d b e b o p i d i o m , w i t h ex-
M o r t o n p u t it, "to m a k e great tunes o f themselves." F o r e x a m p l e , B e n n y t e n d e d tertian h a r m o n i e s ( i n c l u d i n g n i n t h a n d t h i r t e e n t h c h o r d s ) , dart-
C a r t e r ' s " E v e r y b o d y S h u f f l e " (1934) features a s e q u e n c e o f e i g h t S t o m p - i n g , a n g u l a r lines f o r t h e e n s e m b l e , a n d a p o s t - C h a r l i e P a r k e r alto saxo-
based strains w i t h solos a n d e n s e m b l e riff choruses. S c h u l l e r a n d W i l l i a m s p h o n e solo. I n short, the a r r a n g e m e n t fits squarely i n t o the e r a o f Evans's
n o t e several o t h e r S w i n g E r a spinoffs, i n c l u d i n g L a r r y C l i n t o n a n d B u n n y c o l l a b o r a t i o n s w i t h M i l e s Davis w h i l e t a k i n g full m e a s u r e o f j a z z h i s t o r y
B e r i g a n ' s "Study i n B r o w n , " C a b C a l l o w a y ' s " A t the C l a m b a k e C a r n i v a l , " before it was filtered t h r o u g h e a r l i e r versions o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p . " A s
H a r r y J a m e s ' s " J u m p T o w n " a n d " C a l l the P o r t e r , " a n d B e n n y G o o d m a n ' s a result, Evans's v e r s i o n n o t o n l y reaffirms t h e p i e c e ' s p l a c e i n t h e j a z z
" S l i p p e d D i s c , " a p u n n i n g title r e f e r r i n g b o t h to t h e r e c o r d a n d to G o o d - t r a d i t i o n , it also makes the piece a repository for that t r a d i t i o n .
m a n ' s sciatica, f o r w h i c h h e ' d h a d surgery at t h e M a y o C l i n i c i n t h e s u m - A similar effect t h r o u g h contrasting means emerges f r o m J o n H e n d r i c k s ' s
m e r o f 1940 ( S c h u l l e r a n d W i l l i a m s 1983:14). Sy O l i v e r ' s " W e l l , G i t It!" f o r vocalese s u n g b y the M a n h a t t a n T r a n s f e r i n a precise r e n d i t i o n o f G o o d -
T o m m y D o r s e y ' s O r c h e s t r a , r e c o r d e d i n 1942, b e g i n s as a blues flagwaver m a n ' s J u l y 1, 1935, r e c o r d i n g . A l t h o u g h e x p l o r e d by several sophisticated
a l a " B u g l e C a l l R a g " t h e n shifts to a series o f S t o m p - b a s e d strains. D u k e p r a c t i t i o n e r s s i n c e t h e 1940s, v o c a l e s e has o n l y r e c e n t l y e m e r g e d as a
E l l i n g t o n ' s "Bojangles ( A P o r t r a i t o f B i l l R o b i n s o n ) " (1940), i n c l u d e s a re- serious subject i n j a z z s c h o l a r s h i p (see G r a n t 1995). H e n d r i c k s , a master
c u r r i n g riff c h o r u s also based o n M o r t o n ' s S t o m p . T h e S t o m p p r o g r e s s i o n o f the g e n r e , creates a vocalese that characteristically tells a fact-based b u t
also makes a surprise a p p e a r a n c e i n the eight-bar tag e n d i n g o f the W i l l i e f a n c i f u l story a b o u t t h e m u s i c o n w h i c h it is w r i t t e n ( s o m e t i m e s w i t h
B r y a n t O r c h e s t r a ' s r e c o r d i n g o f G e r s h w i n ' s " L i z a , " r e c o r d e d A u g u s t 1, r h y m e s w o r t h y o f a n o t h e r P o r t e r : C o l e ) . B y t e l l i n g t h e story b e h i n d
1935, w h i l e G o o d m a n ' s b a n d was i n the m i d s t o f its n a t i o n a l tour. M o r t o n ' s p i e c e i n w o r d s set to G o o d m a n ' s r e c o r d e d p e r f o r m a n c e o f
48 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 49

H e n d e r s o n ' s a r r a n g e m e n t , H e n d r i c k s , i n effect, u n i t e s the t u n e ' s t h r e e s w i n g i n g e n e r a l ; a n d G o o d m a n himself, whose b a n d p r o j e c t e d H e n d e r -


p r i n c i p a l legends. H e r e is the i n t r o d u c t i o n a n d first strain s u n g by A l a n son's a r r a n g e m e n t s , starting w i t h " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p , " i n t o the ears a n d
P a u l to the tune o f B u n n y B e r i g a n ' s solo (while the o t h e r three singers feet o f A m e r i c a n s f r o m N e w Y o r k to L o s A n g e l e s , c r e a t i n g a n a t i o n a l style
back it w i t h the a c c o m p a n y i n g riffs a n d l o n g tones set to w o r d s s h o w n i n f r o m a n a r r a n g i n g style that o r i g i n a t e d i n H a r l e m . T h e story also i n c l u d e s
13
italics): a c a m e o a p p e a r a n c e by the y o u n g Dizzy G i l l e s p i e , a n d p e r h a p s even L o u i s
A r m s t r o n g , i n absentia. S u c h a l i n e a g e l e n d s the piece's c a n o n i c status a n
G a t h e r r o u n ' ' n h e a r m y story a u r a o f Tightness a n d inevitability.
Oh boy! Y e t the p i e c e ' s history reveals that it was a n y t h i n g b u t d e s t i n e d f o r that
' B o u t the t i m e w h e n J e l l y R o l l was i n t o w n status. F o r w e l l over a d e c a d e , M o r t o n w i t h h e l d it f r o m p u b l i c a t i o n a n d
(Stompin' it off, stompin'it off. . .) r e c o r d i n g . W h e n i t was finally p u b l i s h e d a n d r e c o r d e d i n 1 9 2 3 - 2 4 , i t
H e heard a local pianist f a i l e d to c a t c h o n a m o n g b a n d s , despite p u b l i c a t i o n as a stock arrange-
What joy! m e n t p r o m o t e d t h r o u g h p r e - p u b l i c a t i o n plugs. H e n d e r s o n ' s first r e c o r d -
S t o m p i n ' out music o n an o l d upright piano i n g , i n fact, was never even issued. A f t e r that, b e t w e e n 1 9 2 5 - 3 1 , few i f any
Here comes King o t h e r b a n d s p i c k e d u p the piece besides H e n d e r s o n ' s . I n d e e d , Rust d o c u -
that was d o w n r i g h t r a g g e d i n a Scott J o p l i n way m e n t s o n l y two r e c o r d i n g s between M a r c h 1925 a n d D e c e m b e r 1932: o n e
(Here he comesmaster of the stomp) by M o r t o n (1926) a n d o n e by H e n d e r s o n (1928). A n d w h i l e Rust's discog-
O l ' J e l l y k n e w the f e l l a ' c o u l d play r a p h y is n o t exhaustive, it makes clear that " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " was neg-
Dig him! l e c t e d i n c o m p a r i s o n w i t h o t h e r hits a n d e m e r g i n g j a z z standards o f the
by the t h i n g s h e h e a r d h i s r i g h t h a n d say p e r i o d (see C r a w f o r d a n d M a g e e 1992). H e n d e r s o n ' s 1928 v e r s i o n , a r a d i -
(Now we're gonna romp) cal r e v i s i o n o f the p i e c e , nevertheless c a m e at a t i m e w h e n the b a n d h a d
(There was no doubtin' that the man could swing) lost D o n R e d m a n , a p i l l a r o f its m u s i c a l i d e n t i t y since the b a n d ' s f o r m a -
W h e n J e l l y R o l l d e m a n d e d his n a m e t i o n i n 1923. T h e 1932 C o l u m b i a v e r s i o n , n o w widely a n t h o l o g i z e d , was
Hail! King Porter s q u e e z e d i n at the e n d o f a r e c o r d i n g session t h a t a l m o s t d i d n o t take
W e l l , the m a n r e s p o n d e d " P o r t e r K i n g " p l a c e , a n d a p p e a r e d o n l y o n a cut-rate O K e h r e c o r d . T h e a r r a n g e m e n t
(Dig 'im!) By order! d e v e l o p e d by H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d c a m e i n t o G o o d m a n ' s h a n d s o n l y after
W e l l , J e l l y l e f ' the city, b u t h e wrote H e n d e r s o n ' s b a n d , o u t o f m o n e y , h a d d i s s o l v e d . E v e n G o o d m a n ' s now-
(Dig 'im!) Ya wanna dig 'im l e g e n d a r y P a l o m a r B a l l r o o m a p p e a r a n c e o n A u g u s t 2 1 , 1935, a l m o s t
a r o m p i n ' ditty ' b o u t a P o r t e r d i d n ' t h a p p e n because G o o d m a n n e a r l y d i s b a n d e d his o r c h e s t r a after a
(Dig 'im!) Ya gonna dig 'im debacle i n Denver, C o l o r a d o . M o r e o v e r , B u n n y Berigan's solo o n " K i n g
w h o was " K i n g o ' the s t o m p " P o r t e r S t o m p , " w h i c h h a d e l e c t r i f i e d the P a l o m a r c r o w d , m i g h t n o t have
Porter' King sho' can stomp b e e n h e a r d i n p u b l i c b e c a u s e G o o d m a n a c t u a l l y f i r e d B e r i g a n i n Salt
L a k e C i t y f o r excessive d r i n k i n g , o n l y to h i r e h i m b a c k the n e x t day
(Firestone 1993:146).
Conclusion T h e w r i t t e n a n d a u r a l r e c o r d o f " K i n g P o r t e r " ' s h i s t o r y suggests that
T h e story o f " K i n g P o r t e r S t o m p " i n the p e r i o d b e f o r e b e b o p ranges this c a n o n i c a l w o r k , so i n f l u e n t i a l a n d w i d e l y p l a y e d i n j a z z ' s first half-
across f o u r decades a n d t h r e e c r u c i a l figures i n j a z z ' s early d e v e l o p m e n t : c e n t u r y , a c h i e v e d its h a l l o w e d status a l m o s t i n spite o f its c r e a t o r a n d
J e l l y R o l l M o r t o n , the p i a n i s t a n d b a n d l e a d e r w h o m G u n t h e r S c h u l l e r has c h i e f advocates. Y e t i t c o n t i n u e s to exert f a s c i n a t i o n f o r m u s i c i a n s , listen-
c a l l e d the "first great c o m p o s e r " ( S c h u l l e r 1968:134); F l e t c h e r H e n d e r - ers, a n d dancers even n o w , a c e n t u r y after the date its c o m p o s e r c l a i m e d
s o n , the b a n d l e a d e r a n d a r r a n g e r whose 1920s b a n d was a p r o t o t y p e for to have " o r i g i n a t e d " j a z z . If a n " o r i g i n a t o r " o r " i n v e n t o r " c a n be seen as a
S w i n g E r a b i g bands, a n d w h o s e a r r a n g e m e n t s d e f i n e d the style o f B e n n y catalyst as m u c h as a c r e a t o r , p e r h a p s the s t a y i n g p o w e r o f the " K i n g
G o o d m a n ' s o r c h e s t r a , a n d by e x t e n s i o n , a n o r m a t i v e s t a n d a r d o f b i g - b a n d P o r t e r S t o m p " may r e d e e m M o r t o n ' s c l a i m as we l o o k b a c k o n his legacy.
50 CURRENT MUSICOLOGY JEFFREY M A G E E 51

Notes 8. As Garvin Bushell told Mark Tucker, "New Orleans" carried stylistic connota-
* I'm grateful to A m y Bland and Peter Schimpf for research assistance, to James tions for musicians i n 1920s New York. "When you went to hear a band out o f New
Dapogny for copies o f his unpublished essay and transcription, to R i c h a r d Orleans," Bushell recalled, "you heard a different feel. The harmonic line was the
Crawford and Jeffrey Taylor for many suggestions during the research that led to same, but the rhythm of the solos was different" (Bushell and Tucker 1988:25).
this article, and to the anonymous referees of Current Musicology for their insightful 9. Copyright July 19, 1926 (E644871), arranged by M e l Stitzel.
comments and suggestions on earlier drafts of the article. 10. The phrase "Henderson's revision" must be understood as a shorthand
1. In this article, M o r t o n ' s statements about " K i n g Porter Stomp" are tran- reference to the interactive origins o f the arrangement. According to A l l e n , the
scribed directly from the Library of Congress recording, not from Lomax (1993), arrangement stems from C o l e m a n Hawkins's ideas; trombonist Sandy Williams
which, although usually preserving the substance of Morton's discussion, repre- (with H e n d e r s o n i n the early 1930s) credited material i n the arrangement to
sents considerable editing. Cf. Lomax (1993:146) for Lomax's edited transcription banjo player C h a r l i e D i x o n (Allen 1973:246, 529). Certainly others, undocu-
of this passage. mented, contributed as well. There is no contradiction i n these claims; the
2. A l l three of Henderson's recordings of the piece (made i n 1928, 1932, and arrangement that came to be known as Henderson's "King Porter Stomp," and later
1933) may be found on A Study in Frustration: The Fletcher Henderson Story (Columbia/ written down by him, had its roots in a collaborative effort.
Legacy 57596), as well as i n the Fletcher Henderson series on Classics (Classics C D 11. A few pieces exceed it, based on a count of Goodman's big-band perform-
572 and Classics C D 535). A m o n g Goodman's many recordings of the piece, the ances documented by D . Russell C o n n o r (1988): " D o n ' t Be That Way," "One
most easily available is the classic and widely anthologized version recorded on July O ' C l o c k Jump," "Sing Sing Sing," "Stealin' Apples" (another Henderson arrange-
1, 1935, which has been reissued, for example, on Benny Goodman Plays Fletcher ment) , and "Stompin' at the Savoy." Goodman also performed several other tunes
Henderson, H E P C D 1038; and Benny Goodman: The Birth of Swing (1935-1936) more frequently, but mostly i n small group settings.
(Bluebird 07863). Big Band fazz (Smithsonian R D 030) features that G o o d m a n 12. Another close approximation may be heard on the "King Porter Stomp"
recording and Henderson's 1932 version. Earlier recordings of the same arrange- recording by James Dapogny's Chicago Jazz Band, on Original felly Roll Blues: Music
ment may be found on Benny Goodman and His Orchestra 1935 from the Famous "Let's offelly Roll Morton (Discovery 74008, 1993).
Dance" Broadcasts (Circle CCD-50), from a M a r c h 9, 1935, broadcast, and the 13. The Manhattan Transfer, Swing (Atlantic 83012-2, 1997).
Rhythm Makers Orchestra ( N B C Thesaurus 127), from the band's marathon record-
ing session on June 6, 1935. References
3. The point is further reinforced i n Fred Sturm (1995:n.p.), which includes A l l e n , Walter C. 1973. Hendersonia: The Music of Fletcher Henderson and His
"King Porter Stomp" among four case studies. Musicians. H i g h l a n d Park, N.J.: Published by the author.
4. With due respect for legitimate concerns about canon formation i n jazz, I Berlin, Edward A . 1980. Ragtime: A Musical and Cultural History. Berkeley and Los
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some scholars. For example, at my institution, Indiana University, over 1,600 music Burns, Ken. 2000. fazz: The Story of America's Music. Columbia/Legacy 61432.
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