Surprise! Fred Waring was first bandleader to record "Stagolee"

by Mark Gabrish Conlan

I recently looked up the history of the song "Stagolee" on Wikipedia and found that this song, seemingly a quintessential part of the African-American folk tradition, was first recorded by, of all people, Fred Waring. I found a link to Waring's recording on archive.org and heard a quite remarkable jazz-dance record with some very Bixian trumpet or cornet soloing. Incidentally, I don't believe the 1923 date on this post: not only does the solo work sound later but so does the overall sound quality, which is early electrical rather than late acoustic.

https://archive.org/details/WaringsPennsylvaniansStackOLee1923

Posted on Aug 14, 2017, 4:49 PM

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