The CLEF Club, <i>Darkydom</i>, and World War I

Marva Griffin Carter

in Swing Along

Published in print September 2008 | ISBN: 9780195108910
Published online January 2010 | e-ISBN: 9780199865796 | DOI:
                   The CLEF Club, Darkydom, and World War I

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This chapter describes Will Cook’s social relationships with his publishers to his personal friends. It characterizes Cook as hot-tempered, and argumentative. It discusses that Will and Abbie got divorced in August 1908 as a result of countless marital difficulties, and settled custody of the children out of court. It tells of a famous group, under James Reese Europe, known as Clef Club, which probably evolved from the Memphis Students. It also describes Darkydom as being offensive to many black patrons. It discusses that the Europe-Castle team was dissolved during the World War I in 1917. Jim Europe joined the army but Cook continued to serve as its assistant conductor and chorus master. The chapter explains that Cook’s association with the Clef Club introduced him to many of the men who would become players in his next musical group, the New York Syncopated Orchestra.

Keywords: Clef Club; Darkydom; World War I; James Reese Europe; divorce; social relationship

Chapter.  4320 words. 

Subjects: American Music

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