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The Jazz History of St. Louis-Part 3: World War II and It's Aftermath

Jazz Unlimited on Sunday, July 20 will feature “The Jazz History of St. Louis, Part 3: World War II and Its Aftermath."  The period saw the formation of the George Hudson Orchestra and the early careers of Miles Davis, Clark Terry, Jimmy Forrest, Ernie Wilkins, Charles Fox, Chris Woods, Velma Middleton and Arvell Shaw.  Some of the rare recordings include the recording debut of Wendell Marshall, two tunes recorded by Jimmy Forrest at the Bolo Club, a recording by the Tommy Dean Band, a V-disc recording by Clark Terry and His Section Eights, a recording made in St. Louis by the Cleanhead Vinson big band and a wartime broadcast from Jefferson Barracks by the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra.  During this period, new clubs opened such as the Glass Bar and Club Riviera, but they were soon feeling the pinch of the entertainment tax when the war ended and many closed.  We will hear the voices of the people who made the history: Miles Davis, Clark Terry, Eddie Randle, Ernie Wilkins and Charlie Menees, who was the first jazz disc jockey in St. Louis.

Check out the historical photographs in the slide show.

This Archive of the show will be available until the morning of July 28, 2014.

Here is a "Soundie" of the Jimmie Lunceford Orchestra doing Rhythm Is Our Business and Nagasaki in the 1930's.

Dennis Owsley has broadcast a weekly jazz show for St. Louis Public Radio since April 1983. He holds a Ph.D. in organic chemistry and is a retired Monsanto Senior Science Fellow and college teacher. His show, Jazz Unlimited, airs every Sunday from 9:00 p.m. to midnight. The show has the largest jazz audience in St. Louis and was named Best Jazz Radio Show in St. Louis for the years 2005-2007 and 2009 by the Riverfront Times. In celebration of his 25 years on the air, January 24, 2008 was proclaimed Dennis Owsley Day" in the City of St. Louis. He is the 2010 winner of the St. Louis Public Radio Millard S. Cohen Lifetime Achievement Award. Dennis is also a noted photographer, and his exhibit, In the Moment: Photographs of Jazz Musicians, ran from September 23, 2005 to January 21, 2006 at the Sheldon Art Gallery. He is a lifetime student of jazz history and teaches short courses on the subject. Dennis is the author of the award-winning book City of Gabriels: The History of Jazz in St. Louis 1985-1973, published in 2006.

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