Snake Rag

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Snake Rag is a 1923 jazz standard composed by Joseph Oliver of King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band. It features Oliver and Louis Armstrong on cornet, Honoré Dutrey on trombone, Johnny Dodds on clarinet, Lil Hardin on piano, Baby Dodds on drums, and William M. Johnson on banjo. The rag was a result of improvisation during a session at Richmond, Indiana on April 6, 1923.[1][2] The rag is known for its "trick breaks and animal noises", recalling "crows cawing and swans trumpeting".[2]

In 1959 Armstrong released an album of the same name featuring Snake Rag as the first track and others including "I Want a Big Butter and Egg Man" and "Jelly Roll Blues".[3]


  1. ^ Carney, Court (9 November 2009). Cuttin' up: how early jazz got America's ear. University Press of Kansas. p. 58. 
  2. ^ a b "King Oliver's Creole Jazz Band". 25 March 2009. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 
  3. ^ "Louis Armstrong:Snake Rag". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 December 2013. 

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