Kid: Musicians and their cohorts nicknamed “Kid”

New Orleans & Louisiana
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Musicians and their cohorts nicknamed “Kid” in New Orleans & Louisiana

[Johnny] Kid or Kid Chocolate Alcindor, tap dancer
He performed dance steps of Bojangles Robinson in the Palace Theatre revue in 1937, with New Orleans’ contralto and soubrette Blanche Thompson and the comedy team of Lollypop and Cream Puff. 

Kid Brown
A “famous parachuter” who owned a honky-tonk at the corner of Gravier & Franklin, with a piano and dance floor, near Louis Armstrong’s childhood home and where Armstrong first heard Sidney Bechet play clarinet.

Kid Twat portrait by Ralston Crawford. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University

[Joseph] Kid Twat Butler, bass
Dec. 26, 1905 – June 19, 1982.
Born in Algiers and a childhood friend of  Henry “Red” Allen, he began playing professionally with Raymond Brown’s band in Grand Isle. He also worked with  Nolan “Shine” Williams,  Sam Morgan’s Jazz Band, A. J. Piron, Sidney Desvigne, and Papa Celestin. 

During the 1960s Butler was a regular performer at Preservation Hall with Kid Thomas, Sweet Emma Barrett, and others. 

He’s part of a group interview with the Pierce Band in 1963 that you can listen to online.

[Jimmy] Kid Clayton, trumpet 
Listen to him being interviewed, courtesy of Music Rising, Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

[George] Kid Sheik Colar (1908-1996), trumpet. 
His first mouth piece was a kazoo; played in Kid Rena’s marching band and Eureka Brass Band



 [Wesley] Kid Dimes
Had his own band; was killed in Baton Rouge, “a good trumpet player,” Harold Dejan said.

Kid Green
An ex-prize fighter who  ran a hotel at Rampart & Lafayette streets, Green was a friend of Louis Armstrong’s and would make available to him a room whenever he needed it for  entertaining. Armstrong recalled that he had “so much gold in his mouth they called him Klondike.”

 [Avery] Kid Howard, trumpet,
Cobojo called him “the Louis Armstrong of the South.” Also played drums early on with Harold & Leo Dejan.

Punch Miller headed home, 6 a.m., in 1958. Photograph by Dennis Stock. Buy it., for $2,500, from Magnum.

[Ernest} Punch Miller, trumpet
From Raceland, he quickly became popular in New Orleans after moving there in 1919, where he performed and was called Kid Punch by Kid Clayton. He moved to Chicago in 1927 and returned to New Orleans during the 1940s and performed regularly at Preservation Hall during the 1950s. He played with Jack Carey before World War I, during which he played bugle and after it trumpet with Jelly Roll Morton, Fate Marable, and George Lewis.

[Ernest] Kid Moliere, clarinet
Leo Dejan said he was “the son of old man Paul Moliere” and brother of drummer Paul Moliere, and had an act in which he took his clarinet apart piece by piece down to the mouthpiece while still playing it.

[Edward] Kid Ory, trombone
Ory and his band, from LaPlace, “took New Orleans by storm” about 1907, said Welman Braud.
Louis Armstrong’s first good gig was with him before Armstrong went to Chicago in 1922. Alvin Alcorn said he “didn’t have great range but a big tone.” John Casimir recalled that he and Johnny Dodds would play all day long for funerals and parades. 

Music Rising at Tulane has an interview with Ory and Manuel “Fess” Manetta from 1958 that has with a printed summary and a terrific sound recording you can easily listen to on line.

[Louis] Kid Shots Madison, trumpet
William Ridgley said, “Shots is very good and sweet, and on ragtime he had a good touch. They always asked Shots to play the blues and “Careless Love.” also played with Papa Celestin.

[Henry] Kid Rena (1898- 1949) trumpet, aka Little Turk
Harold Dejan said he was “the best,” and that he “always came out well” in musical battles; he was also  in waif’s home with Louis Armstrong,

[Thomas] Kid Reel
Played with a Dejan band from Reserve, La.

Kid Thomas Valentine portrait by Sydney Byrd, Jazz Fest 1986. Copyright & courtesy of Louisiana State Museum.

 [Thomas] Kid Valentine (1896 – 1987) trumpet
The New York Times called him “the last of the rough house trumpet players.” Music Rising at Tulane has 7 interviews with Valentine that are easy to listen to online.

Kid Victor, trumpet
From Baton Rouge

[Eddie] Kid Wallace, comedian
“A fine comedian” who worked in the 1938 Palace Theatre Revue, with Lollypop and Cream Puff and the dance team of Boo & Zigaboo.

• • •

Portrait by Noel Rockmore, 1963.

Alcorn, Alvin. Interview by Richard B. Allen & Marjorie T. Zander. New Orleans: Nov. 30, 1960 . Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Alexander, Adolphe “Tats.” Interview by William Russell & Harold Dejan. New Orleans: Mar 8, 1961. Nov. 30, 1960 . Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Armstrong, Louis. Statchmo: My Life in New Orleans. 1954. New York, Da Capo P, 1986.

Beaux, McNeal. Interview.  New Orleans: 24 Nov. 1958. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Braud, Wellman. Interview by William Russell et al. New Orleans: 31 Mar. 1958. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Casimir, John. Interview. New Orleans: 17 Jan. 1959. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Cobojo. “Out on the Limb.” Louisiana  Weekly 9 Dec. 1939: 6.

Davis, Uncle Dave. “Henry ‘Kid’ Rena.” Syncopated Times. June 2023. 20 June 2023.

Dejan, Harold. Interview by William Russell. New Orleans: Oct 14 1960. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

Kennedy, Al. Chord Changes on the Chalkboard: How Public School Teachers Shaped Jazz and the Music of New Orleans. Lanham, MD: Scarecrow, 2002.

“Kid Thomas Valentine, Jazz Band Trumpeter.” New York Times. 19 June 1987. 7 July 2023.

Ridgley, WIlliam. Interview by William Russell and Ralph Collins, New Orleans: June 2, 1959. Hogan Jazz Archives, Tulane University, New Orleans.

4 Dec. 2023


Q: was there a second Kid Punch Miller? w/ Jack Carey pre WWI or the same?