Book: Timme Rosenkrantz

Timme Rosenkrantz, Fradley Hamilton Garner, Harlem Jazz Adventures: A European Baron’s Memoir, 1934-1969

Timme Rosenkrantz (1911–1969) had royal Danish blood, but no royal pretensions, and when he came to the US in 1934, his garrulous charm made him fit right in. What attracted him here was jazz. He became a chronicler and friend of musicians from Louis Armstrong to Art Tatum to Lennie Tristano and dozens of others. He was a rounder and a storyteller, and he could write. His memoir, artfully edited by Fradley Garner, is a chronicle of three decades when New York was the center of the jazz universe and Rosenkrantz was swinging through it. Go here to see a video about Rosenkrantz and the book.

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  1. David says

    Some colorful recollections of Rosenkrantz can be found in Linda Dahl’s “Morning Glory” where he is described as “one of those fabulous characters who inhabit the fringes of jazz. Affectionately called the Jazz Baron by some, not so affectionately known as the Robber Baron by others” – the latter reflecting his reputation as a bootlegger of jazz recordings. His New York apartment was said to be the scene of a perpetual cocktail party attended by musicians and celebrities.

  2. Ken Dryden says

    It’s a terrific read, though I’m surprised that Fradley Gardner was unaware that Duke Ellington’s 1943 Carnegie Hall Concert has long since been commercially available, both as a 3 LP set and later a 2 CD set.