All That Metronome Magazine Jazz

New York jazz fans are going to want to mark their fall calendars for this.

Metronome magazine was in business from 1881 to 1961, morphing along the way from a city guide to more of a jazz-focused publication. That jazz legacy is about to get a major new workout, thanks to Getty Images and Pierre Vudrag, owner of the website Limited Runs.

Vudrag combed through the Metronome photo archives, acquired by Getty but since left largely unattended. From an initial selection of several hundred, he’s whittled things down for a forthcoming exhibit to a selection of 27. Per Jordan G. Teicher’s Slate blog item:

Starting in 2013, Vudrag visited Getty’s downtown New York City office regularly to sift through rusty filing cabinets filled with tens of thousands of photos of jazz pioneers from the 1930s to the early 1960s. More than half of the photos in the exhibit are alternate shots that never made it in print. Others were only used in advertisements.

Many of the photographers weren’t credited in the magazine, and even after more than two years of research, Vudrag wasn’t able to identify many of the people behind the historically significant photos he uncovered. The photos capture the musicians in performance and in more casual settings.

The Metronome Jazz Photo Collection is scheduled to be on brief display October 1-3 at New York’s ThreeSixty Design Space. Limited Runs also has several dozen Metronome shots available for purchase.
[Pictured: March 1949 cover]