The Minneapolis Spokesman, the city’s African-American newspaper, began publication on August 10, 1934. One of the first great features was the “Amateur Man about Two Towns,” where readers found out that
Mother Carver’s place on the Sixth Avenue North Road is still the gathering place for those in the know. Frank Hines tickles the ivories at the nite spot, and Tommy Lewis croons as only Tommy can.
The Spokesman was rich with ads and articles about dances that were generally given by social groups. Some of these included:
- The Gloom Chaser’s Club gave a Gloom Chasers Cabaret Ball at the K.P. Hall on August 15, 1934, featuring Babe Salter & His Creolians
- The Clover Leaf Club sponsored a dance at the Aragon Ballroom featuring Joe Billo and his 12-piece band on September 17. On October 1 the entertainers were Eli Rice and his Cotton Pickers, a 15-piece band.
- St. Paul’s Hallie Q. Brown House sponsored a dance with music by Tom “Cab” Coleman and the Harlem Hypocrites.
- Waiters Union No. 614 presented Grant Moore and His Brunswick Recording Orchestra at the St. Paul Coliseum. They broadcast nightly over radio station WTCN. The ad for the September 24 dance promised “Dancing Until Your Feet Are Sore – There’ll Be Plenty of Blue and White Cabs at the Door.”‘
- The Imperial Club began a series of Matinee Parties at the Elks’ Rest on Sunday, September 23, 1934. Admission was 35 cents and music was provided by Scottie Williams and his Black Cat Orchestra.
- In December 1934 the Balloon Club presented Rook Ganz and his Radio Broadcasting Cotton Club Orchestra at a dance at Apex Hall in the Kistler Building. Ganz’s regular gig was at the Cotton Club on Excelsior Blvd. in St. Louis Park.
- On Christmas Eve 1934, Scottie Williams and Rook Ganz appeared at Apex Hall, sharing the stage with Mae Nolan, Burlesque Star, who gave her “Late Snake Hips Dance.”
- The next morning (3 am to 7 am, that is), a second annual breakfast dance called the Town Talk Dance was given by Ray Dysart and his K.C. Rhythm Kings at the Matthews Tavern.
- And on December 25, 1934, two more dances, one in the afternoon and one a Ball at night, were at Apex Hall and featured Eli Rice and his Dixie Cotton Pickers Orchestra.