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Ride, Red, Ride

The Life of Henry 'Red' Allen

Ride, Red, Ride
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This is the first biography of jazz trumpeter and singer, Henry 'Red' Allen, long regarded as Louis Armstrong's chief rival. Both men were born in New Orleans and shared an African-American heritage, but their social backgrounds were quite different. Whereas Armstrong made many best-selling records, Allen never achieved hit parade success but gradually built up a durable international following--today, dozens of his CDs are widely available. As a close friend, Chilton reveals Allen's personality, as well as analyzing his magnificent recordings. The intriguing contrast between Allen's spectacular performance showmanship and his off-stage reticence is dealt with, and fascinating details of Allen's early life in New Orleans and on the Mississippi riverboats are brought to life. Allen's popularity has increased each year since his death in 1967; his latter day tours of Europe are still regarded as being among the most successful by any visiting jazz musician. The background details of all the periods of Allen's varied career are dealt with, including his work with King Oliver, Luis Russell, Fletcher Henderson, Kid Ory, and Louis Armstrong. The book also contains a selected discography.