"Livery Stable Blues"

"By and large, jazz has always been like the kind of a man you wouldn't want your daughter to associate with." (Duke Ellington)

26 February 1917: Today, 96 years ago in Camden, New Jersey, Nick LaRocca and his Original Dixieland Jazz Band recorded the first Jazz single in history for "Victor Talking Machine Company" with their famous "His Master's Voice" trademark of the fox terrier "Nipper" listening to a Berliner Gramophone.

Nick LaRocca and his "Original Dixieland Jazz Band" from a 1918 promotional postcard
Nick LaRocca and his band had previously played in New York and made their New Orleans style jazz a hit in the Big Apple - Victor's record swept the style across the US and the finally the whole world, "Livery Stable Blues" sold over a million times.

Everyone, Victor as well as the band, were surprised by their huge success and had a few hits afterwards, even a London tour in the early twenties when Kid Ory, King Oliver and Jerry Roll Morton had already surpassed LaRocca's popularity - but the Jazz Age had begun in earnest and single records were an integral part of popular culture for the rest of the century.

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