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    Arthur Brigg's Savoy Syncop's Orchester - Mean Dog Blues

    kspm0220s

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    This rarely recorded composition is by far best-known in the version by Red Nichols & His Five Pennies. This, however, is a sought-after rendition by Arthur Briggs' band, made in Germany in 1927. Trumpeter Arthur Briggs started playing in the 369th U.S. Infantry Band. He first visited Europe as a member of Will Marion Cook's Southern Syncopated Orchestra in June 1919. After playing in England and France, he returned home with the band in 1921. A short stint with Leslie Howard's Orchestra followed and then he went back to Europe in 1922, forming his own Savoy Syncopated Orchestra which was based in Belgium, but which also performed in Austria and Germany (1926-1928). Briggs worked with Noble Sissle off and on in Europe during 1928-1930, visiting the U.S. with Sissle briefly in 1931 before returning overseas. In the '30s, Briggs co-led a band with pianist Freddy Johnson, led several of his own groups, recorded with Coleman Hawkins (1935) and Django Reinhardt. Briggs spent time in a concentration camp but fortunately survived and resumed his playing career in 1945. He gigged regularly in France into the mid-'60s, becoming a music teacher in 1964.