Editor, Webmaster:  Phil Cartwright       Editor@earlyjas.org
Personalities -- by Phil Cartwright

Use your 'Back' button or the Navigation Bars to return to the Personalities index page.
Glenn Crytzer:  Composer, Cellist, Banjoist, Vocalist and Dancer
Several EARLYJAS club members witnessed the debut of a new Dixieland band last December at the Barking Spider.  As I
reported last month, the band is made up of students in the Cleveland Institute of Music.  They call themselves the Any
Measure Jass Band (a play on a slogan used by CIM). The oldest musician in the band is barely 25 years old!  Those of us
who were present were delighted with the band.  They are fresh, exuberant and mighty talented.
The organizer and leader of the band is Glenn Crytzer.  Our first look at Glenn was when he started frequenting the
Barking Spider and did some very fancy dancing to the music of the Night Owls and the Hot Jazz 7.  That style of music
encouraged Glenn to start a youth band.  The other musicians are: Jesse Lewis, tpt; Colleen Corning, cl; Tom Pylinski, tbn;
Jacob Adams, pno; Glenn Crytzer, bjo & vocal; and Andrew Welborn, tuba, with Matt Lefevere filling in on drums for
Nathan Cook, their regular drummer.
Here’s a bit of history about Glenn’s accomplishments.        
He was born in Pittsburgh, PA on Oct. 13, 1980.  Glenn’s mother was his first cello teacher.  She started him on cello when
he was eight years old.  Glenn’s dad was not a professional musician but has a lovely singing voice.  Those two influences
seem to have made a wonderful impression.
Glenn came to appreciate early jazz music through his dancing.  He discovered that the earlier jazz styles were more
appealing and danceable than the later jazz music.
Glenn has only been playing banjo for less than a year!  It turns out that his many years playing the cello made the transition
to tenor banjo a bit easier.  The cello and tenor banjo are tuned the same and the fingering is the same.  (Editor’s note:  Does
that mean that I, as a tenor banjo player, can play the cello?  No way!!)
Crytzer holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Music Composition from the Florida State University University where his principal
composition teacher was Ladislav Kubik.  He has studied the cello with Lubomir Georgiev and Merry Peckham,  and was a
frequent performer with the Florida State New Music Ensemble and the FSU Cello Ensemble.  Mr. Crytzer is a currently a
graduate student at the Cleveland Institute of Music where he studies composition with Margaret Brouwer.  One of his
most important mentors continues to be Ellen Zwilich who was the first female Pulitzer Prize winner in composition.
Glenn’s works have been performed by the Florida State University Saxophone Quartet, as well as by students at the
Cleveland Institute of Music, the Oberlin Conservatory, the Florida State University school of Music, faculty of the
University of Louisville, members of the Tallahassee Symphony Orchestra, and the Faculty of the Florida State University.
Nocturne Fantasy, Crytzer’s first orchestral work, received a Student Composer Award in 2005 from the BMI Foundation.  
His work Explorations, for two saxophones and piano, was commissioned by the Trio Bel Canto, and was premiered in
Louisville, KY in July of 2005.
Some of his other music includes works for solo cello, brass quintet, double bass and harp, string quartet, full orchestra,
even a full choir.  A list of his works can be appreciated at his website:  www. Glenncrytzer.com. The site also includes
downloadable samples of some of the music.
February 25, 2006 was the day of Glenn’s Master’s Composition Recital.  The concert  included new works solely by Glenn
Crytzer and  featured CIM faculty, staff, alumni and guest performers. 2:30 pm, Harkness Chapel on the Case Western
Reserve University Campus.

What’s in the future for Glenn?  For the last few years, he has been making a name for himself in New York city as a band
leader and guitarist.
Jelly Roll Morton
Jelly Roll Morton: “I created jazz in 1902.”

A few months ago I heard an NPR story about the release of a boxed set of Jelly Roll
Morton’s Library of Congress recordings. In 1938, Alan Lomax, Head of the Archive of
Folk Song in the Library of Congress coaxed Jelly Roll Morton on to the Stage of the
Library’s Calvin Coolidge Auditorium.  Jelly Roll sat at a Steinway Concert Grand
and talked and played.  Over several sessions, Lomax recorded 54 12-inch disks each
containing four and one half minutes of music and narration.  The disks were a
treasure trove of early jazz history, bawdy stories, brushes with the mob and the law,
and remarkable renditions of Morton’s compositions and other notable jazz, ragtime,
and blues songs.
In succeeding years, some attempts were made to distribute the recordings but only in abridged forms.  According to
record companies, the disks were too old, too obscene, too expensive.
Fortunately, as the NPR story pointed out, we now have available a complete set of these historic recordings, complete
and unabridged.  They are on eight CDs; the eighth includes Abobe files with complete transcriptions of dialogue and
lyrics and several other documents.  The set includes the Lomax biography of Morton and an informative 80 page book
of “liner notes”.
I am now the proud owner of the set, received as a Christmas present.  I’ve listened to several CDs so far and it is
greatly improved from some of the older LPs that I acquired many years ago.  This new version has a much cleaner
sound with remarkable noise reduction and speed control.        
Jelly Roll Morton was an influential jazz pianist, composer, arranger and band leader.  His 1926-1929 recordings with
his Red Hot Peppers were masterpieces of small group jazz from the 1920’s incorporating contrasting textures and
forms, and varied instrumentation, rhythm, and dynamics.
Jelly Roll Morton was also flamboyant with a flair for drama in dress and speech.  One of his trademarks was a big
gold front tooth with an inset diamond.
Some called him a braggart and egotist perhaps because of his startling assertion he made in a letter that Downbeat
magazine published in 1938.  Jelly wrote “… New Orleans is the cradle of jazz, and I, myself, happened to be the
creator in the year 1902.”  That statement was made in reaction to the claim by Ripley’s Believe It Or Not that W. C.
Handy was the originator of jazz, stomps, and blues.  Jelly Roll points out that he (Morton) had composed “King
Porter Stomp” in 1906, “Georgia Swing” in 1907, and “New Orleans Blues” in 1905.
Others claimed the jazz inventor title as well.  Wilbur Sweatman, clarinetist, band leader, and composer of “Down
Home Rag” stated “Don’t you know I originated jazz in the Ozarks in Missouri?” Jazz writer Leonard Feather reported
that Willie “the Lion” Smith claimed with great confidence that “… jazz was first played in the brickyards of
Haverstraw, New York.”
Mr. Jelly Lord, as Morton was sometimes known, was born Ferdinand Joseph Lamothe (some say Lamenthe) in New
Orleans around 1885 son of Haitian free Creoles.  Later he took his stepfather’s name, Mouton.  Still later he began
calling himself Jelly Roll Morton.
Morton left New Orleans in 1907 and traveled throughout the US as a pianist and vaudeville artist.  From 1917 to 1923
he was a musician on the West Coast.  He lived and recorded in Chicago from 1923-1930 and then to New York and
Washington DC.  Morton died of heart failure in Los Angeles in 1941.
Many NE Ohio bands play the standard Morton tunes like Dr. Jazz (written by King Oliver).  The Hot Jazz 7 also does
some of his gems such as Black Bottom Stomp, Kansas City Stomps, Sidewalk Blues and The Chant.  The New
Orleans Jazz Ensemble does Buddy Bolden’s Blues, Sweet Substitute and Winin’ Boy.
This delightful box set is published by Anna Lomax Wood (daughter of Alan Lomax) and Jeffrey A. Greenberg.  The
set is available at record stores and Amazon.com for $119.00  Daedalus Books had it for sale at $90.00 but the last time I
checked it was sold out.  The website is http://www.daedalusbooks.com; item number is 59480 in case they re-stock
the set.
Earlville Association for Ragtime Lovers Yearning
for Jazz Advancement and Socialization