Johnny Dodds' Black Bottom Stompers was a recording session that took place in April of 1927 that included ten great jazz musicians and produced eleven songs. The performers present were Johnny Dodds on Clarinet, Charlie Alexander on piano, Louis Armstrong on Cornet, Barney Bigard on Tenor Saxophone, Baby Dodds on Drums and Vocals, Natty Dominique on Cornet, Earl Hines on Piano, George Mitchell on Cornet, Bud Scott on Banjo and John Thomas on Trombone.
Johnny Dodds was one of the greatest clarinetist of the 1920's, he had a very soulful, bluesy style of playing that was often emotionally powerful. He was a master of the New Orleans' ensemble style of collective improvisation. He didn't have the flash of Louis Armstrong, but often provided the perfect environment for Armstrong to shine.
He worked with most of the major Hot Jazz bands of the era. Dodds was in Kid Ory's band in New Orleans from 1912 to 1919. He played on riverboats with Fate Marable in 1917 and moved to Chicago in 1921 to play with King Oliver. Johnny and his brother Baby Dodds were an important part of Louis Armstrong's classic Hot Five and Hot Seven recordings for Okeh.
During the 1920's he also recorded with Oliver's Creole Jazz Band, Jelly Roll Morton and on most of Lil Hardin-Armstrong's sessions. Unlike many of his famous contemporaries, Dodds and his brother stayed in Chicago and were pretty much forgotten as Jazz moved East to New York in the Thirties.
He recorded several records under his own name in the Twenties, often with Natty Dominique on trumpet, and worked regularly at Kelly's Stables from 1924 to 1930. Dodds continued to play and record in Chicago throughout the Thirties, and also ran a cab company with his brothers.