Thursday, April 16, 2009

Arne (Papa ) Bue Jensen - A Danish Viking

Arne (Papa) Bue Jensen - Een Deense Viking (Nederlands) Arne (Papa) Bue Jensen - A Danish Viking (English) Arne (Papa) Bue Jensen - En dansk Viking (Dansk)
A link to a Papa Bue Discography.

A Danish Viking
Arne (Papa) Bue Jensen
Rienus Kanning

translation: Hans Koert

Arne Bue was born in Copenhagen on the 8th of May 1930. He became the official ambassador of Danish jazz, received golden record awards and the Keys of the city of New Orleans. He became a jazz icon in Dixieland, not only in Denmark, but also in the rest of the world.
As a kid, Arne Bue Jensen became fascinated by Jazz, and this adoration grew when he received a pile of records from his brother with recordings made by Harry James, Artie Shaw, Tommy Dorsey, Glenn Miller and Bert Ambrose. Some records were made by musicians who revived the New Orleans musical tradition; musicians like Bunk Johnson and George Lewis.
Ken Colyer, Papa Bue and George Lewis
After the war Arne became a sailor for a few years and visited ports all around the world, where he listened and enjoyed other styles of rhythms and harmonies. When he returned to Denmark he followed the dictates of his heart and started to play jazz music. He borrowed 375 kronur, a large amount of money in those days, to buy a slide trombone and it took him years to refund it. Karl Friss, who played the trombone in the Royal band, learned him the seven positions of the slide; for the rest Arne was self-taught.
Soon he played with other young jazz musicians and performed in several clubs and bars in Copenhagen, with bands like the Royal Jazzman (later the Bohana Jazz Band), Henrik Johansen’s Jazz Band and the Saint Peter Street Stompers. Arne recorded as a side man on several recordings with these bands. In the mid 1950s he played in the bars around “Nyhavn”, where Copenhagen’s nightlife is situated.
In Cap horn, May 1956, several young musicians like Arne Bue Jensen, Jørgen Svare (clarinet) Ib Lindschouw (drums), Hans Jørgen Larsen (trumpet), Erik Carlsen (bas) and banjo player Poul Harder used to jam together, but they were not a regular band. A similar jam group contained banjo player Bjarne Rønne Pedersen, nicknamed “Liller”. This “Liller” had some troubles with the new trumpet player in his band, so he moved to Arne’s group, that got the name Papa Bue’s New Orleans Jazz Band. Arne Bue, because he was the eldest in the band ( only 28) AND father, was nicknamed Papa Bue. The musicians in this band became a solid factor in the Papa Bue’s New Orleans Jazz Band and the Viking Jazz Band.
The band was enlarged with bass player Eric Clausen and trumpet player Hans Jørgen Larsen.
They played in kro’s ( = restaurants) and bars in Nyhavn in Copenhagen.
In the summer of 1956 the band got a contract to play in Germany. Bass player Erik Clausen didn’t want to leave for Germany and prefered to stay in Denmark; Basse” Mogens Seidelin took his plays as bass player. The others travelled to Hamburg, but there was no contract at all, so they decided to stay there for a couple of days, sleeping in the parks and were on the breadline. Finally they got a gig in Sankt Pauli, the night life spot of Hamburg. They returned to Copenhagen in September 1956. They had some popularity now and for the first time they were invited to play in venues in Germany, like an October 1956 concert in Itzehoe. Larsen left the band and the German musician Gerhard Vohwinkel became the new trumpet player.

Back in Copenhagen Storyville recorded its first album with Vohwinkel, although he was only for two months part of the band. In December he was arrested by the Danish fremmed politi, the aliens police, and sent back to Germany. There were several trumpet players that took his place, like the Englishman Bob Wallis and the Danish Theis Jensen.
They had become a sough after band with performances in several nightclubs in Copenhagen, where they were active from noon until sunrise next morning. They also performed in Sweden. A show on a winter evening in Cap horn in 1957 would become a memorable concert, as an US journalist and vocalist wrote an article about the concert, labelling the men as the Danish Vikings, who played the original New Orleans and Chicago jazz even better then any US band at that moment. Since that article the band called it selves:
Papa Bue’s Viking Jazzband.
An important trumpet player for the band has been Finn Otto Hansen, a technically superb player, who brought the band to a higher level. The band was ready to conquer Europe now ………. .
Although the band played on a professional high level, there where but few gigs available arond that time. To earn a living the members had to keep temporary jobs like Papa Bue who worked in a shoe factory, Finn Otto Hansen, who became a smith, Jørgen Svare studied classical languages, “ Liller” was a labourer, Ib Lindschouw was an errand boy and Mogens “Basse” Seidelin was an mechanical engineer in Sweden.
In the fall of 1958 they recorded their first album as the Papa Bue Viking Jazz Band. They got a million seller with “Schlafe Mein Prinzchen”. This tune was a smash hit.
In 1959 Papa Bue toured along Denmark with the New Orleans legend George Lewis, the one who fascinated Papa Bue when he was a kid. They recorded several albums.
The band took part of several films, like the German movie: “
Jazzband-It” and they recorded the signature tune for the popular Olsen Banden films.
Another important member of the band was, Jørn “Jønne” Jensen, who was a piano player and the leader of the Storyville Jazz Band during the second half of the 1950s. He played in Papa Bue’s Viking Jazzband since 1965.
Enjoy this fragment made in 1981 by Papa Bue's Viking Jazz Band ( incl.
Acker Bilk) playing Sweet Georgia Brown. The personel is: Ole Stolle trumpet, Arne (Papa Bue) Jensen trombone, Acker Bilk clarinet, Jørn Jensen piano, Jens Sjølund bass and Søren Houlind drums.

The Papa Bue Discography contains ca. 50 albums, from 45rpm up tp CDs. The band became real popular in Denmark, when “Liller” started to sing into Danish. At the moment Arne Bue Jensen, Papa Bue, is the only original member of the 1956 band. Jørgen Svare left the band and has his own jazz band now; Siedelin and Lidschouw have left too. “Liller“ left the band a few times and started a solo career, but passed away in 1993. Since “Liller” left, there hasn’t been any banjo player in the band.

Papa Bue is still extremely popular in Denmark, although his playing is over the top now. Thanks to his band mates he is still able to pull his weight in the band, although his health is failing. Of course we hope to have him with us for a very long time.

Rienus Kanning -
keepswinging@live.nl

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1 Comments:

Blogger FaithInUSA said...

Thank you for this blog. Last Saturday afternoon the 20 years I enjoy jazz in a club in Toronto. When I heard "Nyhavn tak for whad du gave mig' played by Climax Jazzband http://climaxjazzband.blogspot.com/ I asked how they came upon that little diddly they answered "We learned that from Papa Bue" as if someone in Toronto in 1995 would know who that was.

11:28 PM  

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