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PRESTO : The American Music Trade Weekly, Online Library — 1920 – 1941

July 7, 2012
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Wow, look at this!

Searching for information on Doris Peavey, who played accordion with Peavey’s Jazz Bandits in the early 1920s, I found this page from Presto, the American Music Trade Weekly, which has an online searchable library!

faded magazine, photo of early 1920's jazz band, Doris Peavey on accordion, Eddie Condon banjo/guitar.

If you can’t see it, they may have taken away this pdf I spent so much time getting visible up there. I don’t know how to get a static link to their site. Sorry. Still an awesome resource and worth checking out.

Try it out.  It’s an instrument manufacturer’s trade journal, so lots of endorsements and patent and product announcements.  Who knew that Gretsch imported accordions too?  Cool!

The International Arcade Museum is the PRESTO archives parent site.  They address coin-operated machines from juke-boxes to video games.  They also archive the Music Trade Review magazine starting from 1880.  Combined, these two journals return 1260 hits when you search for “accordion.”  Holy, they were doing big business!
We need to cloud-source the filtering through of these to find what’s interesting.  Tell me if you find anything interesting.  You could publish an entire book just of these little references.  I would be among the several people who would be excited to read it.
This all started when I commented in relation to a post about a later Chicago band the Cellar Boys, who had a mysterious, unknown accordionist.  That led me back to Peavey’s Jazz Bandits, and this article from PRESTO: The America Music Trade Weekly, March 29,  1924.

H. M. Peavey and his Jazz Bandits,  of St. Paul, Minn., have not only established an enviable reputation in the “near” Northwest through their theater and dancing pavilion engagements, but have also acquired a much wider fame through their broadcasting activities.

The Jazz Bandits are made up of seven men and two girls under the direction of Mr. Peavey. Mr. Peavey’s directorial career has been marked by his search for exactly the instrument suited to the exceptional talent which he has organized under his leadership. That he has succeeded in his purpose is indicated in a letter received by the Martin Band Instrument Company of Elkhart, Indiana, to whom this distinguished director wrote as follows:
“I wish to congratulate you upon the  success you are having and which you deserve. I am having my band entirely ‘Martin’ equipped as fast as you can make shipments. We are more than pleased with your instruments, and wherever we can speak a good word for ‘Martin’ we are more than pleased to do so. My kindest regards and best wishes for the continued success of ‘Handcraft’ Instruments.”

One Comment leave one →
  1. January 25, 2014 10:49 am

    Dang, looks like they took away that pdf I spent so much time getting visible up there. I don’t know how to get a static link to their site. Sorry. Still an awesome resource

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