ANA usually sticks to musical sounds rather than nostalgic sights. Still, this clip of Maynard Baird’s Southern Serenaders (at about 0:57 into the clip below) is hard to resist:
Baird and his Serenaders were one of countless territory bands providing music to all the ears and feet outside the major metropolitan centers. This footage of them from a remote broadcast by a radio station in their native Tennessee is literally a moving reminder that jazz was happening outside of New Orleans, Chicago and New York.
Unfortunately it’s also literally impossible to listen to. There’s no telling how these players were influenced by their own hometown sounds, for example how close, far or parallel the music of the Baird band was to that of the string trio that appears later on. Some audio may have shed further light on how the rest of the South heard and played jazz.
Baird cut just four records: warm, bubbling dance numbers with enough solos and colors to leave the listener curious for what the band sounded like live, for example at a gig like this one. Judging by the fast and furious banjo and dancing tuba player in the video, Maynard Baird’s Southern Serenaders could cook!
Here’s two from the Baird band, with some red hot edges peeking out from under all those glowing textures and sugary vocals (reissue courtesy of Frog):