George Ogg and the Houston music scene of the '30s, '40s, and '50s

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Andrew Brown of Houston has a blog called Wired for Sound, devoted primarily to the music of the Texas Gulf Coast in the '30s and '40s and the musicians who made it -- some, like bandleader Moon Mullican, rhythm guitarist Cameron Hill, and pioneer steel guitar player Bob Dunn, barely remembered; most long ago forgotten. On many of the entries, the music from an old 78 is accompanied by the story of the song, the session, and the players, along with a photo of the band if one can be found.

One of his first entries is a compilation of two extended interviews with a saxophonist named George Ogg who began his musical career as a 16 year old in the late 1930s, continuing in the business until the '50s. He seems to have played with most everyone in the constantly circulating Houston music circuit.

Ogg's memories cover more than music. There's marijuana, murder, arson, and much more about the time when the hottest music around could be heard at a dance hall at a motel next to the Houston Ship Channel. It is fascinating reading.

It was touching, too, to see comments from relatives of some of the musicians mentioned by Ogg. The commenters had heard bits and pieces from relatives about their granddad or uncle's years as a musician; now they had some concrete information, some context for their family lore.


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This page contains a single entry by Michael Bates published on March 13, 2011 1:17 AM.

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