by Pat Hawes
(from the liner notes of The Compositions of Jelly Roll Morton 1923 – 1941 on Timeless Records)
Gregoire Nakchounian played clarinet and saxophone and was probably of Russian/Armenian extraction. "Shreevepoort Stomp" is played at a cracking tempo but the complex second theme, which starts in a minor key and resolves to major, is left out. Morton recorded "Shreveport Stomp" in June 1928 with Omer Simeon (clarinet) and Tommy Benford (drums) on the same session as "Shoe Shiner's Drag" for Victor.

The date and venue for Nakchounian's recording were orginally given in Rust's "Jazz Records 1897-1942" as December 1926 in Berlin, but recent research has suggested April/May 1928 in Leipzig or Berlin. In either case, the Russian North Star Orchestra predates the Morton performance. The original Vox 78 issue is extremely rare to say the least. Many years ago Belgian collector Albert Bettonville junked a copy and intrigued by the spelling "Schreevepoort" and no doubt unaware of its rarity or content, cut out the label and stuck it on the wall of his apartment. (My thanks to John R.T. Davies for this information!) The rest of the band were European musicians who contributed some good hot solos. Pianist Jean (John) Paques later became firmly established on the Paris jazz scene.

If you would like to order the Timeless Records' CD of The Compositions of Jelly Roll Morton 1923 – 1941 you can do so through Worlds Records or direct from Timeless Records.

Thanks to Yves Francois for his help with the recordings on this page.

Title Recording Date Recording Location Company
Brotherly Love
(Meyer / Elmer Schobel)
12-1926 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10270
Emile 12-1926 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10271
Katinka
(Rudolf Friml)
1-1927 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10269
Krazy Kapers 12-1926 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10271
Shreevepoort Stomp
(Jelly Roll Morton)
12-1926 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10270
She Was Just A Sailor's Sweetheart 1-1927 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10270
Sugar Baby 1-1927 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10268
Wa Wa Wa
(Schaefer)
1-1927 Berlin, Deutschland Vox
H-10270
Artist Instrument
Albert Deveydt Clarinet , Tenor Saxophone
Martin Helsmurte Cornet
Gregoire Nakchounian Clarinet, Alto Saxophone, Leader
Jean Paques Piano
Eugene t'Sas Drums
Edwin Steinbacher Banjo
Julian Testaert Trombone
unknown Violin , Vocals