Walter Barnes and his Royal Creolians were a Chicago band that played around Chicago and toured the Southern states until April 23rd, 1940 when Barnes and eight members of his band and one hundred and ninety-three other people were killed in a fire at the Rhythm Night Club in Natchez, Mississippi. In the 1920s Barnes and his Royal Creolians played long residencies at Al Capone's Cotton Club in Cicero, Illinois.

For more information about the tragic fire at the Rhythm Night Club click here. Thanks to Minister Denise Griggs, founder of the African American Genealogy Society of Sacramento for her help with this page.

Title Recording Date Recording Location Company
Birmingham Bertha
From the Motion Picture "On With The Show"

(Harry Akst / Grant Clarke)
7-25-1929 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
4480
Birmingham Bertha
(Harry Akst / Grant Clarke)
7-25-1929 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
A-8535
Buffalo Rhythm
(Beaty / Smoolev / Arluck)
2-27-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
7072
How Long, How Long Blues
(Carr)
12-14-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
4187
If You Are Thinking Of Me
(When I'm Thinking Of You)

(Lambardo / Davidson / Sizemore)
7-25-1929 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
4480
It's Tight Like That
(Thomas A. Dorsey / Hudson Whittaker)
12-24-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
4244
It's Tight Like That
(Thomas A. Dorsey / Whittaker)
12-24-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
C-2705-C
My Kinda Love
(One Way To Paradise)

(Trent / Altier)
12-14-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
4187
Third Rail
(DeMars)
2-27-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
7072
Third Rail
(DeMars)
2-27-1928 Chicago, Illinois Brunswick
C-3010
Artist Instrument
May Alex Vocals
Walter Barnes Leader, Tenor Saxophone
Ed Burke Trombone
William Bradley Trombone
Irby Gage Clarinet
Plunker Hall Banjo
Paul Johnson Piano
George Thigpen Trumpet
Lawrence Thomas Trumpet
Louis Thompson Brass Bass
Wilson Underwood Clarinet
Lucas Wilson Tenor Saxophone
Billy Winston Drums, Vocals