Text Box: JAZZ autographs
Text Box: HARMONIE AUTOGRAPHS AND MUSIC INC.

MUSIC AUTOGRAPHS & ANTIQUARIAN

Phone: 212-860-5541

 

Text Box: MUSIC AUTOGRAPHS AND EPHEMERA BOUGHT AND SOLD

Price: $200.00

MINT CONDITION

MELVIN “TURK” MURPHY & PETE CLUTE

Dual autographed original Al White color 8” x 10” photograph of from a live concert of Turk Murphy’s Band and signed by the trombonist and ragtime pianist.  Banjo player Carl Lunsford is to the left.

 

Murphy (1915-1987) was the leader of the traditional jazz revival in post war California.  His sub genre for which he was rightly famous was Dixieland.  He was from Butte County in Northern agricultural California.  In his teens he played trombone in local jazz bands run by Merle Howard, Val Bender, Hal Mallet and Will Osborne.  His professional break came in 1939 when he was hired by Lu Watters for his Yerba Buena Jazz Band. He served in the navy during the War making recordings with Watters and Bunk Johnson.  After the War, he played with Watters until 1947.  He then decided to revive the New Orleans music of traditional jazz masters King Oliver, Louis Armstrong and Jelly Roll Morton which had given way to swing.  He formed a band to play at the Italian Village.  Success was great and in 1960 he purchased a bar with his pianist Pete Clute which he named Eathquake McGoon’s where they played every night unless they were on tour.  With the bands success at a certain point they were touring, more than they were in San Francisco.  Murphy and the band even had a 3 year stint in New York City where they regularly played at Basin Street East, Embers and Roundtable.  Earthquake McGoon’s moved around several times and finally closed in 1984.  Thereafter the band played at the New Orleans Room of the Fairmont Hotel on Knob Hill.  The band had two really significant gigs in New York City, in 1973 they played the then Philharmonic Hall and in January 1987, they played Carnegie Hall five months before his death.  Interestingly, Murphy arranged Kurt Weill’s “Mack the Knife” for Louis Armstrong.

 

Clute (1933-2001) was Murphy’s long time pianist.  Steeped in ragtime, he began lessons at 5, played in a high school dance band and then went on to Stanford in 1951.  To make some side money he began to play for Lu Watters which led to Turk Murphy and he played with his band for some 28 years.  After his graduation in 1956, full time. He went into Eathquake McGoon’s with Murphy as a partner and due to a dispute over the bar quit in 1978 and joined the Natural Gas Jazz Band and also at the Gold Dust Lounge with banjoist Carl Lunsford.  He kept this up for the rest of his life, touring with the Gas Band and with Lunsford.  He also played at jazz and ragtime festivals around the Country.

 

Rare and interesting!