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Dave Bartholomew, New Orleans trumpeter, songwriter, band reader, producer and organizer is dead; his son, Don Bartholomew, confirmed the news to NPR. He was 100.
Most famous for collaborating on an extraordinary string of hits with Fats Domino between 1949 and 1963 – gathering more than a hundred entries on the pop and R&B cards over time – Bartholomew was one of The primary architects of the sound, now known as rock and roll.
David Louis Bartholomew was born on Christmas Eve 1918 in Edgard, La., St. John's Place Baptist Parish, located about 40 km northwest of New Orleans. Some of the first live music Bartholomew heard came from the bands aboard sailboats docked at Caire's Landing in Edgard as they steamed up and down the Mississippi River. But there was also plenty of music at home: His father, Louis, was a bass and tuba player who performed with jazz clarinetist Willie Humphrey. In the 2016 documentary film The Big Beat: Fats Domino and Birth of Rock Roll Bartholomew reminded with friends and family about his neighborhood's single radio to listen to Louis Armstrong with whom he would soon share one formative town, after his father moved the family to New Orleans, while Dave was still a child, opened a hair salon in the city district.
According to John Broven's 1974 story Rhythm & Blues in New Orleans local jazz bands would advertise forthcoming footage by playing on the back of flatbed trucks crossing the streets; young Dave was among the gaggle of neighborhood kids who would track down after listening to songs like "Tiger Rag" and "Milneburg Joys." It heard Armstrong's recordings that made him choose the trumpet as his instrument – and in fact, was one of his first music teachers Peter Davis, the band instructor who changed Armstrong's life by introducing him to the corn when the young star was imprisoned on Colored Waif's Home in 1913. It was a perfect synchrony: Bartholomew would be just as important for the development of rock and roll as Armstrong was for jazz.
Afterwards, he was a teenager in the 30s when Dave and his horn landed recordings playing traditional jazz, in bands led by Oscar "Papa" Celestin and Joe Robichaux. In the pianist Fats Pichon's ensemble, he performed on a river boat Capitol and rides up to St. Paul and back again to New Orleans. It was the concert he told UPI reporter John Swenson in 1988 on his introduction to the Songwriters Hall of Fame, which taught him how to lead a band; when Pichon took a solo recording in 1941, Bartholomew took over until he was designed for the army in 1942, where he learned to write and arrange music in a military band.
Impresario Lew Chudd was one of the rousing and trading "record men" that emerged on the new frontier of the independent shooting industry after World War II. His Los Angeles-based label, Imperial Records, was only a few years old when he caught Dave Bartholomew's band for the first time on the warm Houston nightspot, Bronze Peacock. It was their sound that inspired Chudd to start looking for rhythm and blues talent in New Orleans to record for Imperial, and in Dave he found a valuable partner. New Jersey-based DeLuxe Records had been the first of the Indians to remind New Orleans of its deep vein of talent after the war; Dave had a hit recording "Country Boy" for them and had investigated more likely actions for the label. In 1949 he signed to do the same for Imperial. One of the very first acts he took Chudd to see in a ninth ward nightclub called Hideaway was a promising young pianist called Antoine "Fats" Domino, Jr. Fats and Dave had a hit right out of the gate for Imperial with "The Fat Man," a recast of pre-war piano blues "Junker's Blues." The album spent three weeks in the top ten of Billboard's R&B card that called what would be almost 15 years of hitmaking for the couple – and with its pounding rhythm, a new sound called rock and roll.
"The Fat Man" was recorded on the back of the latest Tulane dropout Cosimo Matassas J & M Music Shop at Rampart and Dumaine, a jukebox and coin operated machinery company that was gradually morphed into a record store and then a studio. J & M was ready to be ground zero for the development of rock and roll, and Dave Bartholomew was not a small part of it. His band became the house's ensemble at J&M, which supports a laundry list of early rock and R&B greats, including Lloyd Price, Earl King, Smiley Lewis, T-Bone Walker, Frankie Ford, Roy Brown and countless others. Studio Band members supported Little Richard on piano pounder's career-defining 1954 New Orleans sessions for Special Records; in Rhythm & Blues in New Orleans, Dr. John, "it was the New Orleans sound that got Little Richard across."
Dave, who also broadcast a radio program from the local station WJMR record label, served as an internal producer, organizer and author of J & M, developing a reputation as a tough and demanding taskmaster – while rock and roll hall of Fame wrote in his official bio, "shaping the rhythmic orientation of the city to a sound everyone would come to know and love as rock and roll."
Bartholomew was initiated in Rock Hall as a non-executive in 1991, Five years after his protégé and partner Fats Domino joined his first class of honorees. In 2010, Rock Hall dedicated its annual American music master to both men, the first time it had recognized such creative collaboration. But the "non-performer" mark had stood, Bartholomew told UPI's Swenson back in 88 – and perhaps for good reason. His legacy as a musician and band reader was inseparable from his influence as an architect of American music. At the end of the 40's, Dave Bartholomew Band was the band in town as far as rhythm and blues were concerned, scissor Alvin "Red" Tyler explained to Broven.
It is true that by the time rock and roll were here to stay, Bartholomew was too busy writing and producing to work much with his own horn. "He had reached a level that other people would not call Dave and say," Hey, man, will you make a session? "" Tyler told the brother "… because he probably would say" No , man, I don't have time. "" But the pages he recorded for himself in the 50s were masterful and diverse, from the clattering Caribbean rhythms of "Shrimp and Gumbo" to the shady news "My Ding-A-Ling" (like Chuck Berry was invented in 1972) for the unique abrasive blues "The Monkey Speaks His Mind", a strange figure asking whether people of all their sins are truly superior to the primates, showing their rolling, stentorian baritone. (Elvis Costello celebrated the tune of his album 2004 The Delivery Man name control Bartholomew on the track "Monkey to Man.")
Ear open and eye perennially on the bottom line Bartholomew, which was recorded in his first rap video – A song called "Born in the Country", a collaboration with his son, New Orleans hip hop producer Don B, and grandson, rapper Supa Dezzy, in 2011 updated on the successes of New Orleans artists well into the 21st century, regardless of the genre. During an interview at New Orleans & # 39; community radio station WWOZ in 2008, DJ & # 39; tried to flatter him – mistakenly as it turned out – suggesting that the latest generation of local stars like Lil Wayne did not measure up to the work of Bartholomew's generation. Listeners could almost hear that Bartholomew's eyes grew in contempt when he informed the jockey that his colleague New Orleanian had sold millions of copies; He knew exactly how many singles the younger artist had on the Billboard cards that week.