Black Quotidian: Everyday History in African-American Newspapers

June 29, 1929

On June 29, 1929, the Norfolk Journal and Guide featured an advertisement for a new record by Jabbo Smith and his Rhythm Aces, “Decatur Street Tutti.” The record, produced by Brunswick Race Records, featured “a mean clarinet...a hot guitar...and a vocal chorus that’s full of pep.”  

At, Lee Weinstock says this about Cladys “Jabbo” Smith:

Jabbo had a short but exceedingly important recording career in the late 1920's when he became the first trumpeter to seriously challenge Louis Armstrong with a virtuosity which was years ahead of its time. His work had a direct influence on Roy Eldridge, a pivotal figure in the development of Modern Jazz…
At the request of Mayo Williams of the Brunswick Record Company of Chicago he formed his Rhythm Aces, a quintet with which he recorded nineteen sides from January to August 1929. In these works Jabbo displays extraordinary virtuosity and exemplary musicianship on trumpet as well as vocal. Possibly, because the work was too advanced or sophisticated, the records were not accepted by the public and have, until recently, been largely forgotten. Of much more importance however, was the fact the these records attracted the attention of Roy Eldridge, who adopted some of Jabbo's technically explosive, chance-taking speed in the high register and explorative style into his own playing.

Here is “Decatur Street Tutti” by Jabbo Smith and his Rhythm Aces:

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