Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
PARKER, John W. 'Knocky'
(b 8 Aug. '18, Palmer TX; d 3 Sep. '86) Good pianist in traditional jazz, of particular interest because he came out of western swing, recording with the Wanderers in Texas '35 and with the Light Crust Doughboys '37--9. After WWII he switched to jazz (though bands like the Doughboys had never been self-conscious about their jazz element), working with New Orleans clarinettist Albert Nicholas and drummer Zutty Singleton; later in trio with Omer Simeon and drummer Arthur Herber, with Doc Evans off and on. He was the first to attempt to record all of Scott Joplin's and James Scott's rags on two-LP sets on Audiophile '60--62; he also recorded four LPs of Golden Treasury Of Ragtime on that label late '60s; duos with pipe organist Bill Coffman and with eight other pianists on two Euphonics LPs '78, other albums on Jazzology '79. Knocky Parker, Dick Wellstood And The Galvanized Washboard Band In Gay Old New Orleans was on GHB. He was also an English professor and lecturer on jazz; played at New Orleans Jazz Festival '83; led quintet Houserockers backing Big Joe Turner on his 72nd birthday on Southland label '83. LPs on Circle and GHB; CD Stomps And Blues on Jazzology with Evans, Nicholas, Simeon etc; two-CD Complete Works Of Jelly Roll Morton on Solo Art.