Alvin Alcorn

Alvin Alcorn was a great pianist and musician who played with Kid Ory’s Creole Jazz Band between 1954-1956. This was well documented by Good Time Jazz, and has been reissued as part of the Original Jazz Classics series. Alcorn was a master at leading ensembles. He had a beautiful tone, was subtle but sometimes powerful, and could build up ensembles to a high level of success. Alcorn was taught music theory by his brother. His early years were active, even though they are now obscured. Alcorn freelanced in New Orleans, playing with Armand J. Piron’s Sunny South Syncopators between 1930-1931. He also toured with Don Albert’s Texas-based swing group during 1932-1937. Although he did record one date, he probably didn’t take any solos. Alcorn was a New Orleans resident from 1937 to 1938, where he played with many bands, including Sidney Desvigne (1951), Oscar Celestin (1951), Octave Crosby (1951), and Paul Barbarin. Alcorn moved to Los Angeles to join Ory in 1954. Their four records were some of the most memorable of his career. Alcorn continued to play with local bands until the 1980s, and toured Europe with Chris Barber (in 1978). Alcorn’s post-Ory recordings, except for one with George Lewis at Verve, were all for small labels. They are often disappointing because of the poor recording quality and the gradual decline of the trumpeter. However, his work with Kid Ory guarantees him a place as a New Orleans legend. bio from

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