Bob Effros in 1929

Bob Effros in 1929
Bob Effros (left) with Vincent Lopez Orchestra

Monday, March 31, 2014

Integration, Segregation & Jazz Part 1

My Grandpa Bob always shared stories about becoming close friends with Louis Armstrong and W.C. Handy on the Mississippi River Boats.  During the early 20's, Black and White Musicians were segregated.

Socially they often jammed together when the river boats docked in cities along the "Great River". Eventually, (and more will be shared), the talented Jazz and Dixieland musicians were allowed to perform together - BUT only for White audiences.

We have been researching Grandpa's chronology. We know he started  performing in his teen years with Armstrong, Handy and Bix Beiderbecke and countless other talented Jazz musicians. They met on Mississippi river steamboats, traveled trains to New York, Chicago, Hollywood and Culver City -(our current home town).

 By the early 20's Grandpa Bob, Louis and Bix played  together and separately with Big Band Orchestras of Vincent Lopez , George Gershwin, Paul Whiteman, Duke Ellington, Cab Calloway and Benny Goodman. (1)

  As Louis Armstrong said " many people don't realize that the Mississippi River does not flow up to Chicago!"  

(Image 1879-Public Domain)
Music from 20's and 30's never ceases to amaze me!  We are discovering  family members of  Jazz musicians and performers also archiving and sharing this brilliant, historical and upbeat period.
Jazz Radio, Concerts and Journalists are doing a magnificient job keeping Jazz music alive!  Thank you!


1."Pops: A Life of Louis Armstrong"  Terry Teachout, Author

2. The New York Times, Feb 15, 1987 "The Whiteman Concert of 1924 Lives On" John Wilson, Author

3. "Bix Beiderbecke - Wikipedia

4."Bix, Man & Legend" Sudhalter and Evan, Authors

5."Vincent Lopez Speaking" Autobiography, Vincent Lopez, 1961

Sunday, March 16, 2014

Effros the Prankster

Below is an excerpt from Vincent Lopez's autobiography. In Lopez Speaking: An autobiography, the following passage entails one of the infamous pranks Bob Effros would often play on his pals. In this prank, Xavier Cugat the famous violinist, is the victim of one of Bob's practical jokes.

       "Cugie had developed quite a crush on a showgirl who often came into the Grill with her escort. Bob Effros, our first trumpeter, who knew her, persuaded her to give Cugie the ever-lovin' eye one evening. Then he fashioned a note which a waiter delivered to Cugat as the girl was leaving, giving a fictitious name and apartment number and saying she'd love to have him play the violin for her the next afternoon!
Cugie just couldn't keep the good news to himself.
"I know that girl quite well," Bob Effros confided. "The way to make a hit with her is bring her a strawberry shortcake. She's crazy about them."
So Cugat took both his violin and a big Lindy cake with him the following afternoon. The apartment the boys had picked for their joke was two flights up a dark stairway, on Tenth Avenue, in Hell's Kitchen! As Cugie stumbled up the last few steps, trying to see in the gloom, he suddenly heard a very angry masculine voice shout, "So you're the crumb who's been visitin' my wife I'm woikin!"
With that, prankster Effros smashed a couple of electric light bulbs, and the echoes in the narrow hall sounded like revolver shots. Cugat took the stairs three at a time as he reversed direction. He sprinted a full block before he realized that the footfalls and shouts following him belonged to Bob Effros and his practical joke pals."

Monday, March 3, 2014

Hit Radio 1920's "Singing in the Rain"

Bob Effros,trumpeter - Anoomi - Online Music Playlists   (credit)

"Singing in the Rain"  widely disputed whom actual composed.  Grandpa performed the
great hit with the The Philco Orchestra and continues to be a hit through the decades!

"Let A Little Pleasure Interfere With Business from The Philco Hour, 1931 ... songs mentions Billy Artz as director and Bob Effros as one of the trumpet players"

Beautiful album cover of "Boswell Sisters"  - performed and played often with Bob Effros The Boswell Sisters (Martha, Connie & Helvetia) Accompanied by:

(a) Victor Young And The Brunswick Orchestra. Personnel according to the CD-booklet
Bunny Berigan, Bob Effros (tp), Tommy Dorsey (tb), Jimmy Dorsey (cl, as),. The trumpeter who plays solos is Mannie Klein.
Credit:  Boswell