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Jambled Blues

Sonny Clay's Plantation Orchestra


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An Introduction to
Sonny Clay
(May 15th 1899 - April 13th 1973)


This recording was produced in Los Angeles, California on July 28th 1925 featuring Ernest Coycault trumpet, W. B. Woodman trombone, Leonard Davidson clarinet, Sonny Clay piano & leader, Fitzgerald banjo, and Willie McDaniels drums & kazoo.

*"Jambled Blues" was composed by Sonny Clay.

Born in Texas in 1899 Sonny Clay moved to Phoenix with his family at the age of eight. The young Clay started out on drums and xylophone, and transitioned to studying piano around 1915. He returned to the role of percussionist for both Charlie Green and Jelly Roll Morton in Mexico around 1920, and also played in California with Reb Spikes. Sonny made his debut on record in 1922 backing Camille Allen on piano, and played with Kid Ory at the Hiawatha Dancing Academy in Los Angeles later that year.

In 1923 he formed his own band, the "Eccentric Harmony Six"; this ensemble recorded on Vocalion Records as the "California Poppies" soon after, and the "Stompin' Six" in 1925. His ensembles also performed under the band names of "Plantation Orchestra" and "Hartford Ballroom Orchestra."

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