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From the Land of Band Box Records

Joel Cowan

With the Al Russell and Do-Re-Me Trios

A local musician from a progressive Denver rock group – “Umbra”, Steve Faulkner,  was a good friend and co-worker with Cowan at Simmons Music store in Denver during the 1970’s.  And Faulkner does recall Cowan telling him about performing with a lineup of Ink Spots here in Denver.  That group recorded one LP on Denver’s Band Box label.

Cowan attended college in the 1940’s in Columbia, South Carolina meeting up with Wilbert Allen “Al” Russell and the two began playing together in a band.  They would reunite more than once – and played together in the mid 1940’s appearing in Los Angeles in the 1950’s and play out west as The Al “Stomps” Russell Trio.

Throughout the 1940’s the Trio would record together changing their names to the “Do-Re-Me Trio”  in 1948

In 1945 the group would begin backing up Timmie Rogers at Excelsior Records where they would also record.

Cowan spent a lot of time with the Al Russell Trio traveling to both ends of the United States – Cowan would depart the Trio sometime in the early 1950’s

Joel Cowan and His Brown Notes

Butte Montana – 1957

Musicians were:

  • Joel Cowan (guitar)
  • Leon “Rags” Ragsdale (piano)
  • Jimmy Robinson (sax)
  • Paul Dennis (Drums)

Joel Cowan and Dale Smith/Also the Ebony Five

Joel recorded on Band Box records with a version of The Ink Spots and also released a comedy album on that label.

45 – Jade 100 – “Cabaret” b/w “Guitar Boogie”

Al Russell and Do Re Me Trio Discography

78 –  Coast 501 – Solid Mr. Kelly with The Jelly b/w It’s So – March 1945

78 – Coast 502 – Shy-Ann b/w Eight Nine and Ten – March, 1945

78 – Excelsior OR-180 – Dig Mister K. Kay Kay b/w More Than You Know – July, 1945

(The allusion to the K K K got the band in a bit of trouble)

78 – 20th Century – Blue Prelude b/w Holiday Blues – December, 1946

78 – 20th Century 20-23 – I’m Yours b/w World War 2 Blues – December, 1946

78 – 20th Century – Studebaker b/w Just Plain Love – early 1947

78 – Saphire 705 – Say It Isn’t So b/w Shy Ann – January, 1947

78 – Saphire 706 – Under the Stars b/w Down the Road A Piece – January, 1957

78 – Saphire 707 – Strike Blues b/w The Trouble with Me Is You – February, 1957

78 – Queen – World War 2 Blues b/w Holiday Blues – 1947

78 – Apollo – Let’s Get Together b/w Let’s Go Down the Old Road – April, 1947

78 – Deluxe 6002 – Down the Road a Piece b/w Shy Ann – 1947

78 – Deluxe 1081 – Once In a While b/w Nobody Loves a Fat Man

78 – Deluxe 1083 – Please Be Kind b/w Nobody Loves a Fat Man – June, 1947

78 – Commodore 7504 – There’s a Man at the Door b/w Teresa – December, 1947

78 – Commodore 7505 – Wrapped Up In a Dream – January, 1948

78 – Commodore 7550 – Cabaret b/w Darling Make It So

78 – Commodore – There’s A Man at the Door b/w Like Taking Candy From a Baby – November, 1948

78 – Commodore – How Can I Smile b/w You Can’t Love Two – December, 1948

78 – Commodore – Brother Boodie b/w Don’t – December, 1948

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