William P. Gottlieb’s Glorious Images from the Golden Age Of Jazz

Writer and photographer William P. Gottlieb documented the jazz scene in New York City and Washington, D.C., from 1938 to 1948, a time seen as the "Golden Age of Jazz".

 

Brooklyn-born writer and photographer William P. Gottlieb documented the jazz scene in New York City and Washington, D.C. both in words and pictures from 1938 to 1948, a time now often described as the “Golden Age of Jazz”. He studied economics at Lehigh University and wrote for the weekly campus newspaper and became editor-in-chief of The Lehigh Review. In 1938 during his last year at college he started writing a weekly jazz column for The Washington Post. When the Post decided that it could not afford to pay a photographer to shoot photos for the jazz column and unperturbed Gottlieb went out and purchased his own press camera.

After a stroke he died in 2006, the New York Times wrote:

William P. Gottlieb, who with a boxy, old-fashioned press camera indelibly defined what jazz looked like in a brief, magical time when both early legends like Armstrong and Ellington and the emerging beboppers ruled the bandstands and radio waves.

52nd Street

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Louis Armstrong, Aquarium, New York, N.Y., ca. July 1946

William P Gottlieb

Doris Day at the Aquarium, New York c. July 1946,

William P. Gottlieb

Art Tatum and Phil Moore, Downbeat, New York, N.Y., between 1946 and 1948

Portrait of June Christy and Bob Cooper, 1947 or 1948

Portrait of June Christy and Bob Cooper, 1947 or 1948

William P. Gottlieb

Sarah Vaughan at Cafe Society, NYC, ca. September 1946.

William P. Gottlieb,

Dizzy Gillespie’s Orchestra On The Savoy Bandstand.

William P. Gottlieb

Ella Fitzgerald and Dizzy Gillespie. New York City, September 1947.

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Terry Gibbs, Harry Biss, and Bill (Buddy) De Arango, Three Deuces, New York, N.Y., ca. June 1947

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Vivien Garry, New York, N.Y., Dixon’s, ca. May 1947

Portrait of Stan Kenton and Buddy Childers, Richmond, Va., 1947 or 1948

Portrait of Stan Kenton and Buddy Childers, Richmond, Va., 1947 or 1948

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Louis Armstrong, Aquarium, New York, N.Y., ca. July 1946

 

Portrait of Billy Taylor and Bob Wyatt, New York, N.Y., between 1946 and 1948

Portrait of Billy Taylor and Bob Wyatt, New York, N.Y., between 1946 and 1948

[Portrait of Jo Stafford, New York, N.Y.(?), ca. July 1946

Portrait of Jo Stafford, New York, N.Y., ca. July 1946

Portrait of Billie Holiday and Mister, Downbeat(?), New York, N.Y., ca. June 1946

Portrait of Billie Holiday and Mister, Downbeat(?), New York, N.Y., ca. June 1946

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Paul Whiteman, Joe Mooney, Andy Fitzgerald, Gaeton (Gate) Frega, and Jack Hotop, Eddie Condon’s, New York, N.Y., ca. June 1947

 

Portrait of Billie Holiday and Mister, Downbeat, New York, N.Y., ca. Feb. 1947]

William P. Gottlieb

Times Square, July 1947. Photograph by William P. Gottlieb

Portrait of Sarah Vaughan, Café Society (Downtown), New York, N.Y., ca. Sept. 1946

Portrait of Sarah Vaughan, Café Society (Downtown), New York, N.Y., ca. Sept. 1946

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Charlie Parker, Red Rodney, Dizzy Gillespie, Margie Hyams, and Chuck Wayne, Downbeat, New York, N.Y., ca. 1947

William Gottlieb

Portrait of Billie Holiday, Downbeat, New York, N.Y., ca. June 1946