Morning Song – Kansas City Man Blues
New Orleans has a special place in the heart of this little blog’s Music Department, never more so than today. No city has a greater claim to being the home of American music, and today’s song is just another bit of proof.
There were great jazz trumpeters before Louis Armstrong, but fellow New Orleans native Sidney Bechet was the first great jazz saxophonist. And he beat Armstrong to the recording studio (by just a few months, but still).
Bechet was a gifted clarinetist, but it was on soprano sax that he blazed a trail later followed by everyone from Charlie Parker and Lester Young to John Coltrane and Sonny Rollins. As the electric guitar is the signature solo instrument of rock, so the saxophone is for jazz…and it doesn’t happen without Bechet. Here’s his groundbreaking recording of “Kansas City Man Blues” with Clarence Williams’ Blue Five.