Original Dixieland Jass Band (after mid-1917 spelling changed to Jazz) was a New Orleans band which, in 1917, was the first ever to make a jazz recording. The first jazz band to achieve widespread prominence, the Original Dixieland Jass Band is often known by the initials O.D.J.B. The group made the first recordings of many jazz standards, probably the most famous being "Tiger Rag."
The band consisted of five musicians who had previously played in the Papa Jack Laine bands, a diverse and racially integrated collection of musicians who played for parades, dances, and advertising in New Orleans. The actual band ODJB was not racially integrated at all, consisting of all-white members.
The O.D.J.B. were billed as the "Creators of Jazz." Trumpeter Nick LaRocca convinced himself, in his old age, that this was literally true, but there is no evidence from the interviews and writings of the other O.D.J.B. members that the rest of the band ever considered it anything more than a snappy advertising slogan.
Origins of the Original Dixieland Jazz Band
While a couple of other New Orleans bands had passed through New York City slightly earlier, they were part of vaudeville acts. The O.D.J.B., on the other hand, played for dancing and were hence the first "jass" band to get a following of fans in New York, and then record at a time when the USA's recording industry was almost entirely centered in New York and New Jersey.
Shortly after arriving in New York they were offered a chance per a letter dated January 29, 1917 to audition for the Columbia Graphaphone Company which took place on Wednesday, January 31, 1917. Nothing came of this audition (though Columbia would invite them back to record after their success with Victor).
The band then recorded two sides ("Livery Stable Blues" and "Dixie Jass Band One Step") on February 26, 1917 for the Victor Talking Machine Company. The record with these titles came out the following month. The ODJB's records, first marketed simply as a novelty, were a surprise hit, and gave many Americans their first taste of jazz.