A Guide to the Jack Teagarden Archive, 1937-1963, 1975
Jazz musician Weldon Leo (Jack) Teagarden (1905-1964) was born in Vernon, Texas, to Charles and Helen Teagarden. Beginning piano lessons at the age of five, Teagarden switched to trombone two years later. After his first professional performance in 1921, Teagarden played with several Texas bands and made his first trip to New York in 1926. A year later he moved to the city and defeated Glenn Miller for the position of first trombone in Ben Pollack’s band. Teagarden made his first recording as a member of Pollack’s Kentucky Grasshoppers and went on to record with many jazz greats, including Red Nichols, Benny Goodman, and Louis Armstrong. He was also one of the first white jazz musicians to record with black players.
Departing from the traditional Dixieland “tailgate” trombone style, Teagarden’s playing avoided a strict solo beat and incorporated upper register solos, “blue notes,” and lip trills. He was the featured performer at 1957’s Newport Jazz Festival and appeared in the movies Birth of the Blues (1941), The Glass Wall (1953), and Jazz on a Summer's Day (1959).
Handbook of Texas Online, s.v. "Teagarden, Weldon Leo [Jack]," (accessed October 18, 2010).
The Jack Teagarden Archive, 1937-1963, 1975, documents live performances and the history of Teagarden, his bands, and other jazz musicians. The collection includes recordings (1937-1963) from live concerts and radio broadcasts by Teagarden and his Sextet and Orchestra as well as Teagarden performing with Louis Armstrong’s All-Stars, Jack McVea & His All Stars, the Woody Herman All Stars, Tex Beneke, and Bing Crosby, among others. Additionally, the archive includes a 1975 oral history of jazz band Jimmie’s Joys (1921-1923), which formed at the University of Texas.
This collection is open for research use.
Use of audio materials by appointment only; please contact sound archivist for more information.
Due to preservation concerns, original materials are restricted. Access copies of CDs provided for patron use.
The family of Jack Teagarden maintains copyright of unpublished materials.
Jack Teagarden Archive, 1937-1963, 1975, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s “History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light project,” 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers