B.A. Rolfe as soloist?

by John Coffin

Long ago, I read in one of Armstrong's biographies that his own use of the very high range of the trumpet was, partially, inspired by hearing B.A. Rolfe.

Now, as everyone here knows, Rolfe's reputation in the late 20s seems to have centered on his leading of the radio orchestra that bore his name for the Lucky Strike radio show..with Paul Whiteman's Old Gold radio show pushed as a rival.

Searching around for Rolfe performances, I keep finding dance orchestra music with no trace of Rolfe's playing. I assume that he was more interested in managing/directing an orchestra, as he had also put music aside to enter in to film production earlier.

Does anyone have, or have links for, any recordings of Rolfe's cornet or trumpet playing. Especially any high-note specialties that might have caught Louis' attention?

Posted on Feb 3, 2018, 9:01 PM

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