Putney Dandridge

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Putney Dandridge
Birth name Louis Dandridge
Born January 13, 1902
Origin Richmond, Virginia, United States
Died February 15, 1946
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Pianist
Instruments Piano
Associated acts Lonnie Johnson

Louis "Putney" Dandridge (January 13, 1902 – February 15, 1946) was an American bandleader, jazz pianist and vocalist. Born in Richmond, Virginia, Dandridge began performing in 1918 as a pianist in the a revue entitled the Drake and Walker Show. In 1930, he worked for a time as accompanist for legendary tap dancer Bill "Bojangles" Robinson, including appearances in the important black musical Brown Buddies[1] In February 1931, Dandridge appeared in the cast of the musical revue ‘Heatin’ Up Harlem’ starring Adelaide Hall at the Lafayette Theatre in Harlem.[2] After touring in Illinois and the Great Lakes region, Dandridge settled in Cleveland, Ohio, forming his own band, which included famed guitarist Lonnie Johnson.[3] This period lasted until 1934, when he attempted to perform as a solo act. He took his show to New York City, beginning a series of long residences at the Hickory House on 52nd Street and other local clubs. From 1935 to 1936, he recorded numerous sides under his own name, many of which highlighted some major jazz talents of the period, including Roy Eldridge, Teddy Wilson, Henry "Red" Allen, Buster Bailey, John Kirby, Chu Berry, Cozy Cole and more. Appearing to vanish from the music scene in the late thirties, it is speculated that Dandridge may have been forced to retire due to ill health. Dandridge died in Wall Township, New Jersey at the age of 44.

External links[edit]


  1. ^ Stearns, Marshall & Jean. Jazz Dance: The Story of American Vernacular Dance. Page 155. Da Capo Press, 1994.
  2. ^ Heatin Up Harlem’ at the Lafayette Theatre, Harlem, week commencing 7 February 1931 – advert and newspaper announcement in The New York Age, retrieved 15 December 2014: http://fultonhistory.com/Newspaper%2011/New%20York%20NY%20Age/New%20York%20NY%20Age%201931-1932%20%20Grayscale/New%20York%20NY%20Age%201931-1932%20%20Grayscale%20-%200056.pdf
  3. ^ Sallis, James. The Guitar Players: One Instrument and Its Masters in American Music. Page 44. University of Nebraska Press, 1994