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Corky Corcoran

Colin the Bear

Well-Known Member
Burnley bb9 9dn
I found this while looking for something you do

I've not come across the name before. He played with Harry James so I think I should have. I'm sure I've heard his horn before, just not the name. I think this is where my tenor should be heading. Off to find some more on the tube.

Oh man ! Found another one
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I remember the name Corky Corcoran from a disc a friend used to play donkeys years ago when I was a teenager.

I seem to remember it as an EP ('extended play' - a disk larger than a 'single' but smaller than an LP i.e.'long playing' record .... for anyone here who may not have seen pre CD recordings).

It was the Lionel Hampton recording of 'Stardust'.

Hampton's solo, by the way, is an absolute cracker - he bursts in like the vibraphone is brittle glass on the point of shattering... an absolutely amazing performance. The recording was the one below (see also extract from wikipedia article on Hampton)

In 1947 he performed "Stardust" at a "Just Jazz" concert for producer Gene Norman, also featuring Charlie Shavers and Slam Stewart

There seems to be very little on the net about Corky Corcoran under his own name - you may have more luck finding him mentioned as a sideman...
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I,too, am surprised he is not better known. I'd not heard that YouTube version of It's The Talk of the Town before and I didn't know he had his own orchestra, as on What is This Thing Called Love ; he had some stellar names with him - Emmett Berry (an underated swing trumpeter), Willie Smith, Alan Reuss (guitar) and Nick Fatool on drums.

The Just Jazz EP (of which I have a cd version) with that great version of Stardust, also has One O'clock Jump, The Man I Love and Lady Be Good, on all of which Corky takes creditable solos. His style is very much in the Coleman Hawkins mould with a muscular tone and much use of arpeggiated lines. The cover notes say he was a Harry James discovery but he doesn't feature in either the Rough Guide to Jazz or Alyn Shipton's New History of Jazz. Perhaps he was just a little too much like Hawkins at a time when Hawkins himself was still in the ascendancy.

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