Duke Ellington’s Accordion
Our friend Alan from the Vancouver Squeezebox Circle sent me this:
From the book ‘Stomping the Blues’ by Albert Murray
I want to know more of the story of this picture – the date? That’s a 1930’s style accordion I’d say.
Cornell Smelser played accordion and recorded with Ellington in 1930, I wonder if that could possibly be his? (Like Lennon picked up the session guy’s when they were recording, “All You Need is Love.”) That would be a treat;
Cornell died soon after of TB and [Correction, I just heard from Cornell’s family that he lived a long life after his jazz career. I look forward to more such happy errors!] not many jazz accordionists stepped in to take his place.
My fave Cornell track: “Double Check Stomp” from 1930. One copy I have lists it as by, “The Jungle Band,” that’s Ellington’s orchestra.
Dig the kazoo solo.
Then there’s Ellington jammin out “Accordion Joe” with Cornell.
Here’s a later version of Cornell’s (he wrote it) “Accordion Joe,” with the Dorsey brothers along for the ride.
Oh, hey! There’s a bunch of Cornell Smelser tracks on YouTube. Nobody has ever collected his stuff at all. I’m gonna grab them while I can.
Here’s “Cotton Club Stomp” from that same “Jungle Band” in 1930.
Thanks to Squeezebox Alan for starting this off!