Text Box: JAZZ autographs


Phone: 212-860-5541  *  Fax: 917-677-8247


Price: $250.00



Dual autographed original Al White double-weight 8” x 10” photograph of the important jazz trumpeter and bassist as leaders of The World’s Greatest Jazz Band.  From left to right, clarinet: Bob Wilbur, saxophone: Bed Freeman, bass Bob Haggart, trumpet: Yank Lawson, trumpet: Billy Butterfield, trombone: Lou McGinty, trombone: Cutty Cutshall.    

Bob Gibson, the inventor of the Waterpik was a jazz fan.  In the early 1960’s he produced a series of concerts in Denver called, Bob Gibson’s Jazz Parties.  From that, in 1968 he pulled together some of his olf favorites, Yank Lawson, Bob Haggart, Bob Wilbur, Ralph Sutton and Gus Johnson and they formed a band, he called The World’s Greatest Jazz Band. Lawson and Haggart were co-leaders. The combination, an offshoot of the Lawson-Haggart Band of the 1950’s played in configurations from 7 t0 10 pieces. They played and toured for a decade, inviting in others like Billy Butterfield, Vic Dickeson, Bud Freeman, Bobby Rosegarden, Sonny Russo and many more to play with them over the years.  Prolific recorders, they made a wonderful live record at Carnegie Hall.

Six foot four inch John “Yank” Lawson (1911-1990) was originally from Missouri.   He learned to play the trumpet as a teenager and first gained notice in college playing in the Mizzou jazz band and went to Chicago in 1932 to play in Bob Slatz’s band.  He left after a brief stint and played for Wingy Malone (a one armed trumpeter).  He quickly tired of Malone’s pot habit and went north to Minneapolis ostensibly to visit his future wife and in 1933 joined Ben Pollak’s Band.  When the band broke-up in 1934, he joined Bob Crosby’s new band.  He also played in the smaller configuration band, The Bob Cats.  At this point he also was on some of Louis Armstrong’s recording sessions as second trumpet and spent hours learning from the Master.  Lawson had major solo’s in Crosby’s Bands and when the band broke up four years later Lawson was in demand and Tommy Dorsey snapped him up.  He is the lead trumpeter in the Dorsey records of “Tin Roof Blues and “Lonesome Road”. 

A strong desire to stay home with his wife and young children in 1940, led him to plant roots for awhile and he took a job in the pit of the Broadway Show “Louisiana Purchase”.  That did not last long and he re-upped with Crosby’s new band until 1942.  He then joined Benny Goodman.  Life on the road without a Father did not work well for his family, so he went back to New York City and became a studio side man in recordings, radio and television.  He also played regularly at Eddie Condon’s Club in the Village.  As a side man he played on recordings for Bing Crosby, Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra. He also played King Oliver in Louis Armstrong’s, “Satchmo A Musical Autobiography”. In 1951 with Crosby’s bass player, Bob Haggart, they formed the Lawson-Haggart Band and played Dixieland on tour through 1960.  Steve Allen would often add them to his shows.  In 1968 they formed The World’s Greatest Jazz Band which toured and played in halls, clubs and festivals all over the World.

Bob Haggart (1914-1998) was a jazz bassist, composer and arranger.  He was with Bob Crosby from 1935 to its’ demise in 1942 due to the War.  He composed several hits with the band, "Big Noise from Winnetka", "My Inspiration", "What's New?" and "South Rampart Street Parade". During the War he became a side man for Decca Records and can be heard on many of the greats 78’s of the time including, Louis Armstrong, Eddie Condon, Duke Ellington, Ella Fitzgerald, Benny Goodman, Billie Holliday, Wingy Manone, Charlie Parker, Mugsy Spanier and Sarah Vaughn to name a few.  Ella’s album “Lullabies of Birdland” was arranged by Haggart. In the 1950’s he teamed up with his old friend Yank Lawson from his Crosby days and they formed the Lawson-Haggart Band.  In 1968, The World’s Greatest Jazz Band was conceived in Denver Colorado with Jazz fan Dick Gibson and for the next 10 years Haggart co-led, arranged, performed and toured with the band in various configurations and with many guests of their past.  A large part of their work was Dixieland, but there was plenty of Swing in their play lists as well.

Sensational photograph of the majority of the band in concert!

His most performed work, “Big Noise from Winnetka” for bass and drums can be heard on Youtube in several renditions, including on film.