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[Alvin]

(bToronto, Jan 27, 1910; dCanada, Nov 1970). Americanreed player. He played alto saxophone and in 1942 recorded with Jack Teagarden. After moving to Hollywood he performed and recorded with the bandleaders Horace Heidt (1943–5, 1948–9) and Skinnay Ennis (1945–8), then toured Europe and Asia and recorded with Les Brown, first on clarinet and alto saxophone (...

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Thomas Owens

(bPittsburgh, March 23, 1932). Americantrumpeter and flugelhorn player. He studied music in Pittsburgh (1947–50), Evanston, Illinois (with Renold Schilke of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, 1951–3), and at Wayne State University, Detroit (mid-1950s), where he worked for seven nights a week in the band at the Flame Show Bar. From 1956 to 1957 he played at Klein’s Showbar with Yusef Lateef, Pepper Adams, Kenny Burrell, Louis Hayes, and Tommy Flanagan, after which he was a member of Barry Harris’s band at the Bluebird Inn. He performed with Wild Bill Davis (1961), then joined Count Basie while working in a club in Washington, DC; he toured and recorded with Basie from August 1961 to July 1969, and in 1965 appeared as a soloist with the group on Blues for Ilean on the show “Jazz from WGN-TV.” After moving to Los Angeles he worked in television, and recorded with Ray Brown and Milt Jackson (both ...

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Gary W. Kennedy

(b Fall River, MA, May 31, 1947). American alto saxophonist. He attended the Berklee School of Music (1966–71), after which he moved to Hollywood and worked in various local bands. He later toured internationally as a member of Ray Charles’s orchestra (1973–5), in which he succeeded David “Fathead” Newman, and then settled in Providence, Rhode Island, where he led a fusion group, Channel One (1979–84). He was a regular member of Artie Shaw’s orchestra from 1985 to 1987, and continued to work with him intermittently until 1994; during this time he also co-led a quintet with the leader of Shaw’s band, Dick Johnson. Abate performed in California, Quebec, and Spain with Jerome Richardson, and appeared with Red Rodney at Town Hall, New York, in a tribute concert to Charlie Parker. In 1991 he made his first recording as a leader and by the late 1990s he was working mainly on the East Coast and in Europe. An effective bop soloist, he has often worked in groups incorporating two saxophones. He also plays tenor and soprano saxophone, and flute....

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Rainer E. Lotz

(Alexander)

(bMinneapolis, May 7, 1900; dMinneapolis, Sept 15, 1975). Americanbandleader and violinist. He began his career playing light and classical music as a member of J. Rosamond Johnson’s orchestra (1920–25). In 1925 he recorded as a soloist with Clara Smith (If you only knowed, Col. 14058D, and You better keep the home fires burning, Col. 14062D) and began to lead his own band. The following year he directed the Savoy Bearcats, and in 1927 he reorganized the group for a tour of Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay; he also took a band to England. Between 1928 and 1939 he toured extensively in Europe and visited India twice. After returning to the USA he organized a band in 1940 for Ethel Waters, toured with a small group, and then settled in Chicago, where he played regularly with a trio until 1964. Although he was not a jazz soloist, Abbey employed excellent sidemen, including Fletcher Allen, Emile Christian, Bill Coleman, Peter DuConge, and Crickett Smith. His jazz recordings as a leader remain unissued except for ...

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John Curry

(bNew York, Jan 30, 1927; dNew York, Oct 2, 1993). Double bass and ‘ūd player. His early influences included the music played and sung by his father, who was Sudanese, and the Middle Eastern and East European music he heard growing up in Brooklyn’s multiracial community. He began learning violin at the age of seven and later studied double bass, piano, and tuba and attended the High School of the Performing Arts in New York. At this time he played Greek, Syrian, and Gypsy music professionally at weddings and other occasions. After playing double bass with Art Blakey (1945–8), Don Byas (1946), Sam “the Man” Taylor (1954), and Randy Weston (1954–7) he worked with Thelonious Monk (1957–8), with whom he recorded in performance at the Five Spot in New York and appeared on television in the CBS series “The Seven Lively Arts,” as well as on “The Sound of Jazz” (both ...

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Gary W. Kennedy

[Bland, Leroy ]

(b New York, May 10, 1947). American trumpeter and leader. He began on trumpet at the age of 13, studying formally while in college. In the 1960s he took up Islam and adopted his Muslim name. After working briefly with the Master Brotherhood he toured with rhythm-and-blues bands. In 1972 he formed his group Abdullah, which often included Vincent Chancey, and worked as music director for the dancer Diane McIntyre (1973–83). Having been involved with Sam Rivers’s Studio Rivbea from 1972, he appeared at the studio’s opening with the group Melodic Art-tette, with Charles Brackeen, Ronnie Boykins, and Roger Blank. Most notably he performed and recorded with Sun Ra’s Arkestra from 1975 until 1978, and again regularly from c1988, continuing with the band after the leader’s death in 1992.

Abdullah worked as a sideman with Rivers’s big band (1977–8), Hamiet Bluiett, Arthur Blythe (...

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Gregory E. Smith

revised by Barry Kernfeld

[Michael Christian Joseph, Jr.]

(bNew York, July 2, 1942). American pianist, arranger, and composer. His father was a guitarist and bandleader. Abene performed and recorded at the Newport Jazz Festival in Marshall Brown’s International Youth Band (1958) and studied composition at the Manhattan School of Music (1959–61), though he is primarily self-taught. After working with Clark Terry, Jimmy Nottingham, and others at the Cork ’n Bib on Long Island (1960) he played piano with Don Ellis (1960–61), Maynard Ferguson (1961–5), for whom he also wrote arrangements, Buddy Rich, Harry Edison, and Georgie Auld (in Las Vegas, 1963). From the mid-1960s he performed regularly in New York at the Half Note (with the quintets led by Al Cohn and Zoot Sims and by Bill Berry and Richie Kamuca, 1965–7), Bradley’s (1972–5), Sweet Basil (1978), and Freddy’s (with the singer Barbara Rankin, ...

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Andrew Jaffe

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(bBaltimore, March 10, 1923; dLos Angeles, Jan 27, 2000). Pianist. He studied piano at the Manhattan School of Music. After playing french horn in an army band he returned to New York, where he worked with Snub Mosley (1948), Wilbur De Paris (1948–9), Kai Winding and Bill Harris (1951–2), Chuck Wayne (1952), Sy Oliver, and Louie Bellson (1954); he also recorded with Eddie South (1947) and Louis Armstrong (1951). From 1954 to 1957 he toured and recorded with Ella Fitzgerald (he may be seen accompanying her in the film Pete Kelly’s Blues, 1955), and after a brief period of freelancing he worked from 1958 to 1959 as accompanist to Carmen McRae. During these years he recorded with groups led by Benny Carter and Oscar Pettiford (both 1955), in a leaderless rhythm section with Jimmy Raney, Pettiford, and Kenny Clarke for the educational Music Minus One label (also ...

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[Abramson, Leon Curtis]

(bNew York, Jan 6, 1925; dNew York, April 20, 1992). Americandrummer, brother of Ray Abrams. After serving in the army (1943–6) he played and made recordings (including Lover come back to me, 1946, Decca 24119) with Roy Eldridge (1946–7) and recorded with Joe Thomas (iv). He worked on 52nd Street in the mid-1940s with Coleman Hawkins, J. J. Johnson, and Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis (with whom he recorded in 1950), then played in Eddie Heywood’s trio and Andy Kirk’s orchestra (both 1948). Following a tour with Hot Lips Page he rejoined Heywood, performed and recorded with Illinois Jacquet (1951–2), played with Oscar Pettiford (1952), and worked with Lester Young for 18 months (from spring 1952). He also recorded in bop trios led by Wynton Kelly (1951), Duke Jordan (1954), and Al Haig (...

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[Abramson, Raymond Joseph]

(bNew York, Jan 23, 1920). Americantenor saxophonist, brother of Lee Abrams. In the early 1940s he played in the resident band at Monroe’s Uptown House, which accompanied Coleman Hawkins in performances and on the first studio recordings of bop (16 February 1944); he remained with the group when it became the core of Dizzy Gillespie’s first big band in 1945. The following year he recorded with Kenny Clarke and (during a tour of Europe) Don Redman; his solo playing is well represented on Redman’s For Europeans Only (1946, Ste. 6020–21). His own band (formed 1947) recorded with the singer Billy Stewart (1947, 1949) and under Abrams’s name (1948); Fats Navarro and Coleman Hawkins were among his sidemen. After playing with Andy Kirk (1947–8) he rejoined Gillespie and recorded with Cecil Payne (both 1949). He toured and made recordings with Hot Lips Page (...

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Howard Rye

Record label. It was established by British Decca (seeDecca (jazz)) in 1961, and became known for low-priced reissues of early jazz and popular music and swing. Most items on Ace of Hearts were drawn from the back catalogue of American Decca and from recordings made for Brunswick and Vocalion before ...

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[Adriano]

(bPhiladelphia, Sept 11, 1917; dJuly 1963). Americanpianist. From the late 1930s he played trumpet with Sammy Price and tenor saxophone with Don Bagley. After moving to New York he performed and recorded as a pianist with Eddie “Lockjaw” Davis (1947–8), Dizzy Gillespie (...

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Catherine Collins

revised by Barry Kernfeld

[AlejandroNeciosup-Acuña, Alejandro]

(bPativilca, Peru, Dec 12, 1944). Peruviandrummer and percussionist. He learned trumpet and piano with his father, but was self-taught as a drummer. At the age of 16 he became a studio musician in Lima and in 1964 he was engaged by the dance-band leader Perez Prado to work in Las Vegas. From 1966 to 1974 he played in bands and worked as a studio musician in Puerto Rico. After moving to Las Vegas in 1975 he joined Weather Report, first as a percussionist (October 1975 to April 1976), then as the drummer (April 1976 to October 1977); he recorded two albums with the group, one of which was the highly successful Heavy Weather (1976, Col. PC34418). He also worked with Al Jarreau and Lee Ritenour, joined the Christian fusion group Koinonia (1980), and recorded with (among others) Clare Fischer (...

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Brian Priestley

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(Rufus)

(bCovington, GA, April 29, 1940; dNew York, Nov 14, 1992). Americantenor saxophonist and flutist. As a teenager he attended Clark College, Atlanta, where he was taught by Wayman Carver; while studying in Cleveland in the early 1960s he worked in organ trios, including that of Bill Doggett, playing a hybrid of rhythm-and-blues and jazz. He settled in New York in 1968 and from 1969 to 1973 worked with Roy Haynes, recording with him around 1972. He then played with Art Blakey, Charles Mingus (1973–6), Gil Evans (1975–8), and McCoy Tyner (1976–9), performed with Hannibal Peterson at the festival in Antibes, France (1977), and recorded with James “Blood” Ulmer (1977). In 1975, while touring Europe with Mingus’s band, he made his first recordings under his own name with some fellow sidemen; during this time Mingus’s pianists included Don Pullen and Hugh Lawson, and Dannie Richmond returned as the group’s drummer shortly after Adams joined. In ...

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Mike Hazeldine

(bNew Orleans, April 21, 1904; dNew Orleans, March 1942). Americandrummer. He first played cigar box in a spasm duo with Raymond Burke (1914). From 1923 to 1925 he was a member of Abbie Brunies’s Halfway House Orchestra, with which he made recordings in ...

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Warren Vaché Sr

(Sylvester)[Bernie]

(bAnnapolis, MD, April 15, 1905; dNew Rochelle, NY, Dec 18, 1990). Americanacoustic guitarist. He began on violin and mandolin as a child. Having moved with his family to Washington, DC, in 1920, he worked in the area as a banjoist, at one point leading a group with Claude Hopkins. In New York he performed and recorded with Louis Armstrong (1930), Benny Carter (late 1932), Fletcher Henderson (summer 1933 – April 1934), and Adelaide Hall (1934) and recorded with Jelly Roll Morton (1930), Bubber Miley (1930), and Coleman Hawkins (1933–4); it was during his association with Armstrong that the guitar became his principal instrument, and he was soon known as an excellent rhythm guitarist. He played a one-night stand at Adrian’s Tap Room as a member of a quartet with Henry “Red” Allen, Buster Bailey, and Pops Foster (late summer ...

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Rainer E. Lotz

[Rama IX Bhumibol; Phoemipol Aduldej]

(b Cambridge, MA, Dec 5, 1927). Thai clarinetist and reed player. He was brought up in the USA and in Switzerland, where he learned to play clarinet; he later mastered the whole family of reed instruments, favoring soprano saxophone. Although he is interested in early jazz he was influenced predominantly by Benny Goodman, and participated in jam sessions with Goodman and other jazz musicians who visited Thailand, notably Jack Teagarden and Lionel Hampton. He occasionally plays with his court orchestra in a swing style of the 1940s that is modified by the strong influence of traditional Thai music, but, on account of his official status as the king of Thailand, no recordings by him have been authorized for distribution. (H. Esman and V. Bronsgeest: “Een jazz king: Koning Phoemipol,” ...

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Gary W. Kennedy and Barry Kernfeld

[Wilton Jameson ]

(b New Albany, IN, July 21, 1939). American educator, publisher, record producer, and saxophonist. He performed locally from the age of 15 and while studying at Indiana University (BM 1961; MM 1962) led groups that worked in southern Indiana and Kentucky. Having taught music education at Indiana University Southeast (1967–9) and classical saxophone at the University of Louisville (1970–72), in the early 1970s he established a week-long jazz workshop (or “jazz camp”) held during the summer; by the late 1990s the workshop took place twice annually. Aebersold also presented workshops in other countries, including Australia, Germany, England, Scotland, Denmark, and Canada. In 1992 he received an honorary doctorate in music from Indiana University and began teaching jazz improvisation at the the University of Louisville.

In addition to his principal instrument, Aebersold plays piano and double bass, but he is far better known as an educator than as a performer. In ...