American Jazz Museum

Displaying 1 - 12 of 105
Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of the Gem Theater, labeled 1912-1923. This vantage point faces south on 18th Street between Vine Street and Highland Avenue.

Genre: 
Physical Objects

Resonator guitar owned and played by Leroy "Buster" Berry while he was a member of Bennie Moten's Band. The only inscription on the instrument is "Pat. Pend" for patent pending right below the fretboard.

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of Andy Kirk (left) performing with Dick Wilson (tenor saxophone) and Ben Thigpen (drums).

Genre: 
Physical Objects

Alto saxophone owned and played by Henry Franklin "Buster" Smith. Smith played with the Blue Devils before co-founding the Buster Smith-Count Basie Band of Rhythm. This instrument was sold under the "American Professional" brand name, but was produced by either Martin or Conn.

Genre: 
Photographs

Circa 1925 photograph of Kansas City, Kansas band Paul Banks Syncopating Orchestra, posed with their instruments. Pictured left to right: Clifton Banks, reeds including alto saxophone and clarinet; Miles Pruitt, banjo; Robert Moody, trombone; James Everett, drums; Paul Banks; Ed Lewis, trumpet; Jasper "Jap" Allen, tuba (brass bass).

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of jazz trumpet player Lammar Wright, who was active in Kansas City from the early 1920's until 1927. He is shown here as the lead trumpeter of Cab Calloway's Orchestra in New York City. This photograph is signed by Wright and addressed to VeEssa Spivey, owner of Kansas City's Black Hawk Barbecue.

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of Kansas City jazz pianist Margaret "Countess" Johnson (1919 – 1939). She was active in the 1930's as a teenager in Harlan Leonard's bands and substituting for Count Basie and for Mary Lou William's in Andy Kirk's band.

Genre: 
Photographs
Advertisements

Circa 1938 photograph of Tommy Douglas and his orchestra posed in front of their tour bus. The back of the photograph is an advertisement for the band that reads: "'Howdy' Folks, Tommy Douglas and his Band, The finest and fastest Colored Band on the road, Showmen, Vocalists, Musicians - A Real Entertaining Attraction. Remarks:- For Dates :- Write, Park Region Orchestra Service, Battle Lake, Minnesota. Tommy Douglas And His Band Will be tootin' near you soon. You Will Enjoy Them."

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of a "colored wading pool" located in the median of The Paseo just south of 15th Street (now Truman Road), Kansas City, Missouri.

Big Joe Turner
Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of Kansas City blues shouter Joseph Vernon "Big Joe" Turner Jr. Turner performed in Kansas City in the late 1920's and early 1930's before moving to New York City.

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of the Lincoln High School Cadet Band and Orchestra posed in front of the school. Major N. Clark Smith, director, is pictured in the back to the right.

Genre: 
Photographs

Photograph of jazz singer Elmer "Pha" Terrell. He was active in Kansas City, primarily with Andy Kirk and the Twelve Clouds of Joy, from the early 1930's until 1941. This photograph is signed by Terrell and addressed to VeEssa Spivey, owner of Kansas City's Black Hawk Barbecue.

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