Papa Celestin's Golden Wedding

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Papa Celestin's Golden Wedding
Studio album by Oscar "Papa" Celestin and his New Orleans Band
Released 1955 (1955)
Recorded New Orleans
Genre Traditional Jazz
Label Southland
Producer Joe Mares
Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars [1]

Papa Celestin's Golden Wedding is a studio album released by Papa Celestin and His New Orleans Band in 1955[2] on Southland 10-inch LP record S- LP 206.[1] The album was released posthumously, consisting of the last recordings made by Celestin,[1] who died on December 15, 1954.[3]


The recording sessions on this album were arranged by Southland Records' owner, Joe Mares. Mr. Mares had wanted to record Celestin, and knew that the jazz and New Orleans legend was in failing health. Needing enough material to fill an album, at least a 10-inch one, he arranged to have the songs recorded at extra length each, instead of the three-minute limit that was standard at the time.[4] The liner notes put a spin on this, citing Mares' desire to record the songs in their "full and complete versions."[5] However, Mares did not know if he would be able to book Celestin for another session,[4] a fear that proved to be well founded. Needing an album that would sell well, the songs selected were highly associated with Celestin.[6] Two of these are standards played by almost every Dixieland outfit in existence (Down by the Riverside, When the Saints Go Marching In), but the other two are less well-known (Marie La Veau, Oh Didn't He Ramble.) Note that this last song is often wrongly attributed to W. C. Handy, but the correct attribution is Will Handy.[7]


Allmusic notes that this album is a celebration of Celestin the personality, so the vocals are prominent. The reviewer cites the performances as "authoritative and spirited" and a "precious example of early New Orleans jazz". However, it notes that the tracks are hampered by the forced extension of time.[1]


  • Papa Celestin - trumpet, vocals
  • Edward Pierson – trombone, vocals
  • Adolphe Alexander – alto sax
  • Joseph Thomas - clarinet
  • Sidney Brown – bass
  • Jeanette Kimball – piano
  • Albert French – banjo
  • Louis Barbarin – drums

Track listing[edit]

  1. Down by the River Side (Joe Mares)
  2. Saints Come Marching In (no credit)
  3. Marie La Veau (Robert L. Gurley)
  4. Oh Didn't He Ramble (Handy)


  1. ^ a b c d
  2. ^ Neely, Tim (2000). Goldmine Jazz Album Price Guide. Krause Publications. p. 82. ISBN 0-87341-384-9. 
  3. ^ Zoppi, Tony (17 December 1954). "Dallas After Dark". Dallas Morning News. Part 2, p. 9. 
  4. ^ a b VanVorst, Paige. "JazzBeat: Papa Celestin". Jazzology. Retrieved 2011-12-08. 
  5. ^ Rose, Al (1955). Papa Celestin's Golden Wedding (LP Record). Papa Celestin. New Orleans, Louisiana: Southland Records. SLP 206. 
  6. ^ "Thousands Pay Last Respects to Jazz Pioneer". St. Petersburg Times. 20 December 1954. p. 36. Retrieved December 8, 2011. 
  7. ^ Waltz, Bob. Remembering the Old Songs: Didn't He Ramble Retrieved December 8, 2011.