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About Kansas City Five

Banjoist Elmer Snowden, who was from Baltimore and Washington and had no connection with Kansas City, ran the Kansas City Five in the 1920s. Cornet player Bubber Milley, who helped launch Duke Ellington's career, was the Kansas City Five's most famous member. Snowden started the band after his Washingtonians grew into the Duke Ellington Orchestra. The Kansas City Five also featured Jake Frazier on trombone, Louis Metcalf on cornet, Bob Fuller on clarinet and alto sax, and Louis Hooper on piano. The group did some recording in New York from 1924-1925. ~ Ron DePasquale