Jazz Fest 2005
Buddy Bolden Band
by Bill Hemmerling
Once in a great while, an individual comes along who changes the world. Charles "Buddy" Bolden (1877-1931) was in that rarified league. Without Buddy's inventive use of his coronet and band there might be no New Orleans-style jazz as we know it. Bolden created what became known as "the big noise in Jazz." He lives in legend since he worked before the first jazz recording was made, yet was so popular he allegedly had eight bands playing on the same night; running to each to play a few tunes. He lived large as the self-styled "King" of jazz. While his music touched the blues, it was closer to improvised rag time and gave Storyville its distinctive sound. By the end of the 19th century, Bolden's brand of collective improvisation was what New Orleans bands played - and continue to play today. His approach - the hot-jazz ensemble of six or seven players anchored by a coronet - is what we think of today as the New Orleans sound. Louis Armstrong called him, "a one man genius ahead of 'em all." But by 1907, it was time to pay the devil his due; Buddy collapsed while playing in a street parade and was committed to a mental hospital suffering bouts of derangement. He remained there until his death 24 years later. The Funky Butt Hall, a popular dance hall where Bolden played is reimagined in Bill Hemmerling's portrayal of Buddy and his band. Hemmerling catapulted into the first ranks of collectibility since he burst on thescene in 2002. His eclectic paintings made from - and on - found, forgotten and discarded objects, reflect and personify the heart and soul of Louisiana culture. His paintings sell before they're dry and are in collections world-wide. Hemmerling's Bolden is one of those handful of artworks that redefines a legend for a new generation while simultaneously becoming a highly valued collectible in its own right.
3,000 Artist-signed & numbered prints on 100% Rag paper, 24" x 34"
750 Remarques, artist signed & numbered prints on 100% Rag paper, 25" x 38"
300 C-Marques, artist signed & numbered canvasses, 26" x 40"
Poster originally sold for $59 (Unsigned), $235 (Artist-Signed), $595 (Re-Marque), $895 (C-Marque)
Poster and specifications may vary slightly.
Image © 2005 NOJ&HF, Inc / Text © 2005-2006 ProCreations Publishing Company