Governors Island Jazz Age Lawn Party This Sunday


If you’re in New York this weekend, here’s an opportunity to air out your favourite vintage threads:

Fall Jazz Age Lawn Party on Governors Island
Sunday, September 27, 2009
(Rain date: Sunday, Oct. 4th)
11:00 AM to 6:00 PM

From the website:

“Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra invites you to join us on this hidden gem just off the southeastern tip of Manhattan, nestled in the heart of majestic New York Harbor.  Under a shady grove of centuries-old trees, caressed by fresh sea air, a sprawling green surrounded by historic officers’ quarters and 18th century naval ramparts becomes the setting for a true Gatsby affair. A recession-friendly $5 admission gives you access to one of the Fall’s most magnificent celebrations. Widely anticipated by flappers, sporting gents and tiny tots alike, this event has been featured and reviewed consistently by The New York Times and the Sartorialist.

A wide array of music, food & drink, activities, games and contests are open for all ages to enjoy:

– A delightful variety of refreshing cocktails will be served by St. Germain.
– Picnickers are welcomed and encouraged.
– Tasty sandwiches and BBQ provided by Cercle Rouge.
– Authentic ’78 records from the 1920s played on a phonograph provided by Michael Cumella of WFMU’s Antique Phonograph Music Program.
– Charleston lessons given by Roddy Caravella of Sandra Cameron Dance Studio.
– 1920s Motorcar Exhibition – take a spin around the island in a genuine rumbleseat!
– Vintage clothing dealers and boutique milliners will all be peddling wares
– Special literature/ephemera booths and readings by the Dorothy Parker Society & F. Scott Fitzgerald Society.
– Bathing Beauties & Beaus Promenade
– Live dance performances
– Vintage portraits by R.A. Friedman.
– Tug O’ War
– Parade Of Hats
– Bake Sale and Pie Recipe Contest”

Sounds great, wish I could go, but I’m in Buenos Aires right now! If any of you make it, send us photos!

The Blue Devils in crisp linen suits


The Blue Devils were a Kansas city jazz band in the 1920s and 30s, and above we have a photograph from 1932 of the saxophone section (Theo Ross and Buster Smith) welcoming their newest member, Lester Young, in the middle. For jazz fans, other big names that were in the band included Hot Lips Page, Bill ‘Count’ Basie and Jimmy Rushing. If you don’t know who any of those guys are, no problem – just look at how fine those 1930s suits are! Freshly pressed three-piece linen suits, and look at the details! Jazz orchestras knew how to dress. Perfectly matching down to the ties, the shoes, even the pocket handkerchiefs. And look closely, Lester is even holding a pipe.

Photo from ‘Jazz: A History of America’s Music’ by Geoffrey C. Ward and Ken Burns.