Meade Lux Lewis
b. 4 September 1905, Chicago, Illinois, USA, d. 7 June 1964. Although he was popular in Chicago bars in the '20s, Lewis was little known elsewhere and made his living running a taxicab firm with fellow-pianist Albert Ammons. A record he made in 1927, Honky Tonk Train Blues, but which was not released until 1929, eventually came to the attention of John Hammond some half-dozen years later. Encouraged by Hammond and the enormous success of Honky Tonk Train Blues, which he re-recorded in 1936 (and later), Lewis became one of the most popular and successful of the pianists to enjoy fleeting fame during the boogie-woogie craze. With Ammons and Pete Johnson, billed as the Boogie Woogie Trio, he played at Hammond's Carnegie Hall ‘Spirituals to Swing’ concert and at many top New York clubs. Later resident in Los Angeles, Lewis continued to record and tour and make records. From the mid-'30s onwards, Lewis often played celeste and such records, together with those he made in the early '40s with Edmond Hall's Celeste Quartet, where the remaining members of the group were Israel Crosby and Charlie Christian, showed him to be much more versatile than his mass audience appeared to assume. Meade died following a road accident in 1964.
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