Harry Pedler at Højbro Plads

Højbro Plads Jazz Trio Copenhagen

by: Eberhard Kraut, Leonberg/Stuttgart

Højbro Plads (literally “High Bridge Square”) is a rectangular public square located between
the adjoining Amagertorv and Slotsholmen Canal in the City Centre of Copenhagen,
Denmark. It takes its name from the Højbro Bridge which connects it to the Slotsholmen
island on the other side of the canal while Gammel Strand extends along the near side of
the canal. [Description from Wikipedia]
At Højbro Plads we can often hear a jazz trio featuring the very talented clarinet player and
true George Lewis disciple Jesper Capion Larsen, accompanied by Leif Grunert (banjo) and
Ole Olsen (bass).

Recently the trio published a CD. Jesper plays a Harry PEDLER metal Albert clarinet he
obtained a few years ago. He refers to it as his favorite clarinet beside his SELMER wooden
Albert clarinet. This PEDLER is identical to George Lewis’ except for the detachable plain
barrel and fixed bell – George’s had a fixed screw adjustable barrel and a detachable bell. The
photo shows clearly that there is no difference of both metal clarinets concerning the main
body part with keys and tone holes between the barrel and the bell. So they sound equal.
The Højbro Plads Jazz Trio CD, which I can only highly recommend, includes the following tunes:

  1. Smiles
  2. All The World Is Waiting For The Sunrise
  3. Baby Won’t You Please Come Home
  4. Lead Me Savior
  5. When I Grow Too Old To Dream
  6. Over The Waves
  7. Up A Lazy River
  8. I Wish I could Shimmy Like My Sister Kate
  9. Big Butter And Egg Man
  10. All Of Me
  11. Back Home Again In Indiana
  12. Burgundy Street Blues

As we know, Burgundy Street Blues was created and played for the first time by George
Lewis with his Harry PEDLER metal Albert clarinet in 1944. It’s nice to have after nearly 75
years later a version again that is played with a more or less identical clarinet. As the other 11
tunes are also played with a PEDLER metal Albert clarinet, this new Danish CD is a welcome
and worthy reminiscence of the old American Music recordings by Bill Russell.

Thinking about that it crossed my mind that I got 20 years ago a privately recorded tape from
Chris Blount, another true George Lewis disciple, where he played a PEDLER metal Albert
clarinet, stenciled “The Elkhart”. But these great recordings never saw the light of day. Chris
died untimely in 1998. The cassette is now in the case with Chris’ PEDLER I got as a
keepsake of him from his widow Jackie.

The Højbro Plads Jazz Trio CD can be ordered directly from Jesper Capion Larsen.

NB: Jesper Capion Larsen is also the clarinetist of the bands of Søren Doc Houlind. With his
wooden Albert clarinet he can be heard on the CDs of Doc Houlind’s New Orleans Revival
Band / New Orleans All Stars / Ragtime Band.

Published in the British magazine “Just Jazz” May 2018

Harry Pedler

Bb (LP) metal Albert clarinets
made by Harry PEDLER
of Elkhart / Indiana, 
in the early 1930s.

The “Premiere” model on the left is
played by Jesper Capion Larsen.
“The Student” model, as played by
George Lewis, is pictured on the right.
Both Albert clarinets, made of German
silver, have the same bore and
positions & diameters of the tone holes,
reinforced posts and the same key

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