Huston-Tillotson College is the historically Black institution that resulted from the merger of Sam Huston College and Tillotson College. Located in the heart of Black East Austin, Huston-Tillotson is the oldest institution of higher education in Austin (Tillotson Institute, founded in 1881). During the 1940s and 50s, the schools had national reputation for their jazz programs, each with outstanding collegiate jazz big bands. The most noted of these were the Sam Huston Collegiates, under the direction of Bertram Adams. By the time James Polk Arrive in Austin, the schools had been consolidated, but the jazz program continued to be a major component of the school's ability to attract promising musicians to Austin. In recent years, however, the music program at Huston-Tillotson has all but disappeared. There is no longer a performing laboratory jazz band at the college.
New Orleans Club
New Orleans Club was one of the Austin's popular night spots for live rhythm and blues in the 1960s. Ernie Mae Miller was a regular New Orleans club performer during the 1960s, and recorded a live album there.
Victory Grill was the most popular music venue in East Austin during the early 1950s. It was located on East 11th Street and was home-base of the original incarnation of T. D. Bell and the Cadillacs. During its heyday, most of the popular national blues, rhythm and blues, and jazz acts that played Austin performed there. More often than not, T. D. Bell and the Cadillacs were the back-up musicians who performed with those touring acts.
In 1991, Johnny Holmes, with the help of local blues supporters, attempted to re-open the Victory Grill but finances and city building code restrictions made this impossible. At this writing the Victory Grill remains closed.