52nd Street (Manhattan)

The legendary jazz clubs of the 52nd Street were in the 1930s to the 1950s in New York City is a mecca of jazz, particularly bebop, so that they then also Swing Street, was called The Street that never sleeps or Street of Jazz - sometimes it also filed the taxi driver to have to drive to the Street.

Meaning of 52nd Street

The 52nd Street Located in the theater district of midtown Manhattan south of Central Park. Most jazz clubs were there 5 to 7 Avenue ( West 52nd Street) that intersect the perpendicular street, near Broadway. Already in the 1920s, at the time of Prohibition, in the street full of speakeasies ( speakeasies ) was here jazz was played. After the Depression, opened here in the 1930s, more and more jazz clubs, which then shot especially in the heyday of bebop from the mid-1940s out of the ground. Many jazz musicians who had previously played at the nearby Broadway or in other clubs (including the CBS studio was nearby, as is the Radio City Music Hall ) came after here in the clubs together to play with each other until the early morning. George Wein tells how he as a 14- year-old jazz fan from Boston at night with $ 15 in his pocket the clubs of the 52.street abklapperte and for the price of one dollar for a ginger ale, listening to the musicians, often with little public what the musician but did not bother: "It was the greatest feeling that you could have, especially at three clock in the morning. Half asleep and then wake up again. You were alone except for maybe three or four pairs and mean the musicians played for you. " The musicians moved from one club to another and felt like they were in a fraternity in which it the whole history of jazz playing on a street and hear could ( as Shelly Manne ).

Nationally known was the 52nd Street also through live broadcasts from clubs of radio disc jockey Symphony Sid. Today, nothing more is left. Most jazz clubs disappeared by the end of the 1960s (the last 1968), and in the street today are banks and shops. However, the decline began in the late 1940s, as more and more encouraging eighth - Local Strip there.

In the 1950s, only a few Jazz clubs in Midtown Manhattan in particular the Birdland could last longer, the south of the 52nd Street at Broadway, Le Royal Roost ( founded in 1945, known by the performances by Miles Davis in 1948 with the Birth of the Cool musicians ), the Embers ( 161 East 54th Street, played in the predominantly pianists like Marian McPartland and the meeting place of many Broadway stars was ) and the Basin Street ( Broadway and 51st Street, later to move Basin Street East called ). The jazz clubs focused from the 1960s in Greenwich Village ( Village Vanguard, Five Spot, The Village Gate, Jazz Gallery ).

Description of Clubs

Among the jazz clubs of 52.Street included:

  • The Onyx, 35 West 52nd Street ( 1927-1934 ), 72 West ( 1934-1937 ), 62 West (1937 - 1939), 57 West 52nd Street (1942 - 1949). Founded in 1927 as a speakeasy by Joe Helbock, created in 1949 (from a strip club fail). Known by the band of Stuff Smith, but it also played Billie Holiday (1936, in 1943 /4), Art Tatum. In the 1940s there was also played Jazz Bop (including Dizzy Gillespie ) next swing and Dixieland.
  • Downbeat, 66.West 52nd Street ( until 1948 ), founded in 1944 by Morris Levy (previously there was the Yacht Club ). We are regularly played Dizzy Gillespie and Coleman Hawkins. Next, inter alia, Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Art Tatum, Lester Young. In 1948, a strip club out of the club. Opened in 1952, a club of the same name in the West 54th Street. He was until 1954 and presented, among others Mary Lou Williams. In the late 1960s there was a jazz club of that name in the Lexington Avenue / 42 Street, where from 1970 but just rock was still played. 1993 was opened for the fourth time a jazz club of that name.
  • Three Deuces, 72 West 52.Street. He was from 1937 to 1950, when it became a strip club. Known for playing there bebop musicians such as Charlie Parker, but also musicians such as Art Tatum, George Shearing, Ben Webster, Erroll Garner, Slim Gaillard and Slam Stewart and Ella Fitzgerald were on there. Managers were inter alia Sammy Kay and Irving Alexander. It was exactly opposite Jimmy Ryan's.
  • Harlem Uproar House founded in 1937. Occurred in the 1930s, among others the bands of Lucky Millinder, Coleman Hawkins, Mezz Mezzrow on.
  • Yacht Club
  • Jimmy Ryan's, founded in 1940 by Jimmy Ryan and often frequented by Beboppern, but also of New Orleans jazz musicians. Well attended the jam sessions were Sunday afternoon, where the musicians stood in line ( musicians such as Coleman Hawkins, Bobby Hackett, James P. Johnson, Hot Lips Page and Roy Eldridge ). After the death of Ryan in 1963, it was only Ryan's. Reopened Elsewhere, played there in the 1970s regularly Roy Eldridge and the Dixieland musician Max Kaminsky, until the club had to give way to a hotel where the mid-1980s.
  • The Famous Door, 35 West 52nd Street (1935 /6), then 66.West ( 1937-1943 ), 201 West ( November 1943 - early 1944 ), 56 West ( 1947-1950 ). Founded in 1935, inter alia, jointly funded Glenn Miller, the pianist Lennie Hayton ( which it led, later husband of Lena Horne ) and Jimmy Dorsey as a meeting place for musicians to their club appearances and was named after a nearby bar attached autograph door. In the 1930s, big bands played here (like that of Louis Prima at the opening ) and Dixieland musicians, but also eg Red Norvo, Berigan Bunny, Teddy Wilson, Billie Holiday and Bessie Smith. May 1936 joined the club and was re-opened in December 1937. Especially big bands ( Count Basie in 1938, Benny Carter, Woody Herman, Andy Kirk, Charlie Barnet 1939) played after here, but also, for example, Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie ( after his next move 1943), Ella Fitzgerald, Lester Young, Art Tatum, Red Allen, Jack Teagarden, Ben Webster. In 1950, there was a strip club, but there were also in the 1960's a jazz club of that name in the 52nd Street. Later, it was also in other cities of the USA clubs with the name Famous Door, eg in New Orleans (where played the Dukes of Dixieland ). Harry Lim named his New York jazz record label in the early 1970s after the club.
  • The ( original ) Birdland is located on Broadway almost on the corner of 52nd Street.
  • Spotlite Club, 56 West 52nd Street. He ran from December 1944 to 1947 and was under the direction of Clark Monroe, Clark Monroe 's Uptown House in Harlem led before. Here played among others Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster, Billie Holiday, Dizzy Gillespie Big Band, Charlie Parker, Bud Powell, Hot Lips Page.
  • Hickory House, 144 West 52nd Street, founded in 1933 by John Popkin, closed in 1968. Here played among others in the 1950s, Marian McPartland and regularly in the 1960s, Mary Lou Williams, as well as Duke Ellington, Bobby Hackett, Jack Teagarden, Benny Goodman, Jutta Hipp and many others. A steak restaurant ( around 380 seats, 60 at the bar) with a circular bar in the middle of playing the jazz musician.
  • Kelly's Stable, 141 West 51st Street ( until 1940), 137 West 52nd Street ( 1940-1947 ). Here Coleman Hawkins in 1939 developed his interpretation of "Body and Soul". The name of the club comes from a famous nightclub ( under the direction of Bert Kelly) in the 1920s in Chicago. The club was founded by Ralph Watkins in the 1930s ( he sold the club in 1947 after he co-founded the Royal Roost ). The club for his All Star Jam Sessions was known.
  • Tondelayo 's

Thelonious Monk perpetuates the road in 1944 in his composition 52nd Street Theme. Billy Joel released in 1978 an album called 52nd Street.