Fireworks – 1985

Jim Cullum Jazz Band


A version of “Fireworks” that lives up to its name

Jim Cullum (1941-2019) was a cornetist and bandleader who stuck to playing creative traditional hot jazz throughout his life.

Cullum started with his father clarinetist Jim Cullum Sr.’s Happy Jazz Band and, after his Dad’s passing, led the Jim Cullum Jazz Band throughout his life.

Based in San Antonio, Texas, Cullum achieved national fame with his weekly hour-long broadcasts on NPR.

Here is the Jim Cullum Jazz Band from Austin, Texas on Jan. 29, 1985; at the time the group consisted of the leader-cornetist, clarinetist Allan Vache, Randy Reinhart on trombone and second cornet, pianist John Sheridan, banjoist Howard Elkins, bassist Jim Hunter, and drummer Eddie Torres.

They perform a heated version of “Fireworks” which was recorded by Louis Armstrong and Earl Hines in 1928; after Sheridan’s piano solo, the three horns play a harmonized version of Armstrong’s original solo for a half-chorus.

-Scott Yanow

Subscribe to Jazz on the Tube