Mainspring Press: 78 Record Collectors Books & Resources




A gallery of early jazz band advertisements

The phenomenal success of the Original Dixieland Jazz Band at Reisenweber's in February 1917, followed by the release of their first 78 records a short time later, caused an influx of other so-called jazz bands into New York—some of them historically significant, some just noisy novelty acts.

Use of the archaic spelling "Jass" was a Victor affectation. In New York, as the ads confirm, it was "Jazz" from the start.


First New York ad for the Original Dixieland Jazz Band

One of the first New York advertisements for the Original Dixieland Jazz Band,
the name of which apparently escaped Reisenweber's
copy writer at this early date.
(New York Times, February 12, 1917)

Original Dixieland Jazz Band at Reisenweber's

Reisenweber's was soon mentioning the ODJB by name.
(New York Times, March 8, 1917)

Original Creole Band in New York, 1917

The touring Original Creole [Ragtime] Band, with legendary cornetist
Freddy Keppard, played in New York as early as December 1915.
A later version of the band recorded a Victor test on December 2, 1918.
(New York Times, March 8, 1917)

Frisco Jazz Band ad, 1917

The Frisco Jazz Band, led by xylophonist Lou Chiha, was one of many
non-jazz novelty groups that sprang up to exploit the new fad.
They recorded for Edison in 1917.
(New York Times, March 28, 1917)

New Orleans Jazz Band ad, 1917

A white group that included Jimmie Durante as frontman and pianist at the time, the New Orleans Jazz Band made its first records for Gennett in 1918.
(New York Times, April 20, 1917)

Ted Lewis fronting the Rector Jazz Band, 1917

Ted Lewis got his start fronting the novelty jazz band at Rector's,
which recorded for Victor under Earl Fuller's name.
(New York Times, February 14, 1917)

Ted Lewis & ODBJ afternoon tea dance ads, 1917

The polite side of jazz: Ted Lewis and the ODBJ play for afternoon tea dances.
(New York Times, October 15, 1917 and October 8, 1917)

H. O. Ward's Jazz Band ad, 1917

H. O. Ward's Jazz Band was one of many long-forgotten groups that came
and went during 1917–18 without leaving any recordings.
(New York Times, December 15, 1917)

All ads from the Mainspring Press archive.

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