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Wednesday, 9 March 2016

Joe Daniels born 9 March 1908

Joe Daniels ( born Zeerust, Transvaal 9 March 1909; died Northwood, Middlesex 2 July 1993) was a British drummer and bandleader.

Born in the Transvaal, Daniels was brought to London by his parents when he was two and took up drums there when he was 11. That same year he played jobs in Frascati's Restaurant. He took to the drums naturally, being uninfluenced by other players. 
As a teenager he played for Al Kaplan's band in the London clubs, most often at Moody's in Tottenham Court Road. He worked in revue and toured the dance-hall circuit. He led his first band for Kaplan at the Glasgow Palais when he was 16 and was one of the first musicians to play 'the boats' when he worked on the RMS Majestic. In later years Ronnie Scott and others were to follow him playing in the bands which worked on the liners sailing between Southampton and New York.
During a residency at the Belfast Palais, Daniels spotted a man waving agitatedly at him from behind a glass panel in the hall. It was only then that Daniels discovered that his band had been broadcasting regularly from the hall each night and that the agitated gentleman was a technician trying to tell him that they needed him to fill an extra half-hour. It was the beginning of a fruitful broadcasting career.

Harry Roy and his Band (1934) with Joe on drums.
In 1930 Daniels worked with Billy Mason's band at the Cafe de Paris. After work with the trumpeter Max Goldberg and the bandleader Fred Elizalde during the Twenties, Daniels joined Harry Roy in 1931 and stayed with him for six years. 

Daniels formed his Hot Shots whilst he was still with Roy and began a long series of records for Parlophone where the recording manager, Oscar Price, asked him for 'any titles so long as they've got some drums on them'. Daniels obliged with a vengeance. He turned down the chance of royalty payments in favour of a fee. He regretted that when the records were later issued in Russia, Japan, China and the US. The Hot Shots continued until 1951 (Daniels served in the RAF where he ran a quintet during the war), touring dance halls and music halls.
When they disbanded, Daniels immediately formed a band to play more orthodox jazz, being rewarded with an instant booking at the legendary 1951 Festival Hall jazz concert where he joined Humphrey Lyttelton, Mick Mulligan, Freddy Randall and other band leaders who played for the then Princess Elizabeth. 

The later band was quite good and included some good improvising soloists but had only modest success until its demise in 1959. Because of Daniels' show business connections the band was scorned as 'Archer Street jazz' by the fans. (Archer Street was the centre for professional musicians who, unlike real jazz musicians, were actually well paid for their music.) The dignity of the true jazz lover was perhaps offended when Daniels recorded in 1955 as Washboard Joe and the Scrubbers. Eventually Daniels returned to the show business side of the music and led a regular band at one of Butlin's Holiday Camps. 
He continued to play until 1990 when one of his last jobs was at the Savoy Hotel.  (Info edited from Independent obit) 

1 comment:

boppinbob said...

For “Joe Daniels & His Hot Shots – Drummer Goes To Town” go here:

1. Drummer Goes To Town
2. It Don't Mean A Thing (If It Ain't Got That Swing)
3. Who
4. The Japanese Sandman
5. The Loveless Love
6. Basin Street Blues
7. Valparaiso
8. Whispering
9. Wabash Blues
10. Big Boy Blue
11. Cuban Swing
12. Bugle Call Rag
13. Stardust
14. Somebody Stole My Gal
15. Cockles And Mussels
16. Mood Indigo
17. Tutti Frutti
18. The Oldest Swinger In Harlem
19. Narcissus
20. Cuban Pete
21. Beat Me Daddy (Eight To The Bar)
22. Missouri Scrambler
23. All The Nice Girls Love A Sailor
24. Knees Up Mother Brown
25. Mutiny In The Nursery

Dutton Vocalion presents a marvelously entertaining album of 25 swinging sides recorded between 1936 and 1941 by South Africa-born British drummer and bandleader Joe Daniels [1909-1993]. Rather than the Dixieland sound he embraced during the 1950s, this compilation highlights Daniels' spirited swing band and his perky "Drumnasticks" act, a refreshing counterpart to the intricate precision of Chicago-based percussionist Vic Berton. Like most English jazzmen during the years immediately preceding the Second World War, Daniels paid close attention to what was being played and recorded in North America. Composers represented here include Spencer Williams, Duke Ellington, Hoagy Carmichael, and Slim Gaillard, whose "Tutti Frutti" is counterbalanced by the equally silly "Mutiny in the Nursery," one of Daniels' zanier ideas combining the quirkiness of Raymond Scott with the giddiness of the Bonzo Dog Band. On the level, folks, this is one of the better installments in Dutton Vocalion's extensive catalog of British jazz and dance band reissues.