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Article

Antritter, Dieter  

Gerhard Conrad

(b Pforzheim, Germany, Oct 6, 1929; d Königsbach-Stein, Germany, Aug 5, 2015). German soprano, tenor, and bass saxophonist. After receiving three lessons on guitar from a member of the Reinhardt clan he played in dance bands until 1950. He then contacted Sidney Bechet in Paris and learned to play soprano saxophone. He played in Germany with the arranger and bandleader Ernst Simon and also with American soldiers. In 1952 he founded the Quartier Latin Jazz Band, which he led to at least 2009; among its recordings is Dieter Antritter’s Quartier Latin Jazz Band (1996, Jazzpoint 1046). It gave concerts with many visiting musicians, including Mezz Mezzrow, Michel Attenoux, Benny Waters, Nelson Williams, and Peanuts Hucko. Antritter visited Canada in 1989 and worked with local musicians. His playing was influenced by the creole New Orleans jazz musicians and by swing musicians. He also wrote many articles for various newspapers and magazines....

Article

Bariu, Laver  

Vasil S. Tole

(b Përmet, Albania, May 2, 1929; d Përmet, Jan 26, 2014). Albanian folk music performer. A clarinettist and vocalist, nicknamed ‘Përmeti’s nightingale’, founder of the instrumental iso-polyphonic group (saze ensemble) in the Southern town of Përmet (1944–2004). At a young age, he showed a special ability to design and make instruments. He was taught to play the lute and the clarinet by the saze masters in the city of Korçë. Then his family returned to Përmet, where he joined the saze of Vangjel Leskoviku (1944). At Përmet, he organized his own saze and participated in the Folk Music Festival in Tirane (1952), where he was awarded the First Prize for the best folk clarinettist. His saze was composed of a clarinet, two lutes, two accordions, a frame drum, and a violin. The saze played instruments and sang at the same time. He is a composer of songs, clarinet ...

Article

Blake, Jerry  

Howard Rye

[Chabania, Jacinto]

(b Gary, IN, Jan 23, 1904/1906/1908; d c 1961). American saxophonist, clarinetist, arranger, and singer. Various sources give alternative birth years: 1904 appears on a 1929 passenger list; he gave his age as 20 upon marrying in 1926; 1908 appears on his 1940 draft registration, which he signed as Jacinto Chabania. Blake is the name of his adoptive parents. His birth father was Cuban and his birth mother was reportedly born in France. Blake studied violin, then alto saxophone and clarinet. After playing briefly with Charlie Turner’s Arcadians he took ship for Europe with Sam Wooding (1928), with whom he recorded in Barcelona and Paris (1929). He then moved to New York, played with Chick Webb, toured with Zack Whyte’s Chocolate Beau Brummels, and performed and recorded with Don Redman (late 1933 – spring 1934). In April 1934, calling himself Jacinto Blake, he moved to France to work with Willie Lewis, remaining in Europe until May 1935. He worked with Claude Hopkins, both in New York and on tour (mid-...

Article

Butler, Jacques  

Howard Rye

[JackJohn Crawford]

(b Washington, DC, April 29, 1909; d New York, May 9, 2003). American trumpeter and singer. Although Butler gave interviewers the April birthdate shown, and it appears in most official records, his 1942 draft registration card gives March 29, 1909; this card identifies his full name and place of birth. He began playing trumpet at the age of 17. After moving to New York in the late 1920s he worked with Cliff Jackson and with Horace Henderson (1930–31). In 1931 he joined the Alabamians, led by the reed player Marion Hardy, and he remained with the group until it disbanded the following year. Later he led his own band (1934–5) and performed and recorded with Willie Bryant (1936). He then moved to Europe, where he worked mainly with Willie Lewis (late 1936 – 1939). In May 1939 he recorded in Paris with a septet led by Frank “Big Boy” Goudie and from June he toured Scandinavia; he recorded in Oslo in ...

Article

Davis, Tiny  

Howard Rye

[née Carroll, Ernestine]

(b Memphis, Aug 5, 1909; d Chicago, Jan 30, 1994). American trumpeter and singer. Her application for social security (filed in 1941) gives a birth year of 1910, but other sources, including her interview in the film Tiny & Ruby, give 1909. She began playing trumpet at Booker T. Washington High School in Memphis at the age of 13 and embarked on her professional career in Kansas City. About October 1935 she toured with the Harlem Play-Girls, but she left the band at the end of 1936 to have a baby. In the early 1940s she was recruited by Jesse Stone to join the International Sweethearts of Rhythm, with which she was a star soloist; she participated in the group’s USO tour of Europe in 1945, appeared with it in the short film How about that Jive (1946), and remained a member until 1947, when she took over a band comprised mainly of former members of the Prairie View Co-Eds. This group, which became known as the Hell Divers, included Bert Etta Davis, the tenor saxophonist Margaret Backstrom, the drummer Helen Cole, and the double bass player Ruby Lucas (also known as Renei Phelan), with whom Davis formed a musical and personal partnership; in ...

Article

Donaldson, Lou(is Andrew)  

Lawrence Koch

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(b Badin, NC, Nov 1, 1926). American alto saxophonist and singer. His full name appears on his signed November 1942 draft registration card. His mother taught piano and all of his siblings were musicians. Donaldson, however, began studying clarinet only at the age of 15, and he continued to receive tuition when he joined the navy. After taking up alto saxophone he performed in a navy band with Willie Smith, Clark Terry, and Ernie Wilkins (1945). He first recorded with Milt Jackson and Thelonious Monk (both 1952) and as the leader of several small groups; among his sidemen were Blue Mitchell, Horace Silver, and Art Blakey (all 1952), and Clifford Brown and Philly Joe Jones (1953). In 1954 he and Brown joined Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. He continued to lead small groups, mainly in the eastern USA, though he performed in Stockholm in ...

Article

Jones, Luke  

Howard Rye

[Lewis SinclairLouis]

(b Shreveport, LA, Oct 18, 1910; d Los Angeles, Dec 27, 1995). American alto saxophonist, singer, and leader. He moved to California as a child and started playing alto saxophone at Jefferson High School in Los Angeles. While running a barbershop on Central Avenue he worked with Buck Clayton and Lionel Hampton (both mid-1930s) and was a member of bands led by Roy Milton and Lee Young, the latter at Club Alabam (both around 1938). He played baritone saxophone around 1944 with Noble Sissle and later with Les Hite. After touring to Alaska and the Aleutian Islands in 1945 he formed a trio with Betty Hall Jones on piano and George Vann on drums; they recorded for the Atlas label with added personnel, including Red Mack, who became a regular associate, the two leaders playing in each other’s bands and recording during the 1950s. Jones had retired by the 1970s, but he continued to perform occasionally at jam sessions into the 1980s....

Article

Kapayou, Everett  

John-Carlos Perea

(b Tama, IA, May 13, 1933; d Ames, IA, Aug 16, 2006). Native American (Meskwaki) singer, drummer, and flute player. Kapayou was born on the Meskwaki Indian Settlement in Tama, Iowa, where his mother Lucille, a flute player, taught him sacred and secular repertoires of Meskwaki music. While serving in the Army and working in construction, Kapayou retained his commitment to these traditions. He received a National Heritage Fellowship from the NEA in ...

Article

King, Pee Wee  

Rich Kienzle

[Kuczynski, Julius Frank Anthony ]

(b Milwaukee, WI, Feb 18, 1914; d Louisville, KY, March 7, 2000). American country music accordionist, bandleader, songwriter, and vocalist. His musical career was inspired by his father, John, a Polish American who led a local polka band. At 15, he began learning accordion and, in 1930, met popular bandleader Wayne King who suggested the youth take the surname “King” in the interest of simplicity. His first band, the King’s Jesters, played both country music and polkas. In 1934, the group filled in for Gene Autry’s band when Autry, then a star of WLS’s National Barn Dance, toured Wisconsin. King joined Autry (who dubbed him “Pee Wee”) in Louisville until the singer left to launch his Hollywood film career. He briefly led a Louisville band known as the Log Cabin Boys, then in 1937 organized the Golden West Cowboys, who joined the Grand Ole Opry with a distinctive, progressive repertoire blending country, pop, polkas, waltzes, and western swing. From ...

Article

Lebrun family  

T Herman Keahey, Brigitte Höft, Paul Corneilson, Robert Münster, and Roland Würtz

German family of musicians.

Lebrun [Brün, Le], Ludwig August (b Mannheim, bap. May 2, 1752; d Berlin, Dec 12/15/16, 1790)

Lebrun [née Danzi], Franziska [Francesca] (Dorothea) (b Mannheim, March 24, 1756; d Berlin, May 14, 1791)

Lebrun [Dülken], Sophie (b London, June 20, 1781; d Munich, July 23, 1863)

Lebrun [Stentzsch], Rosine (b Munich, April 29, 1783; d Munich, June 5, 1855)

BrookB; BurneyGN; BurneyH; FétisB; FlorimoN; GerberL; GerberNL; LipowskyBL; MGG1 (R. Münster); SchillingE; WalterG Musikalische Real-Zeitung (Dec 30, 1789; Jan 13, 27, 1790; April 28, 1790)Musikalische Korrespondenz der Teutschen Filarmonischen Gesellschaft (Jan 6, 1791; Feb 16, 1791)C.F.D. Schubart: Ideen zu einer Ästhetik der Tonkunst (Vienna, 1806/R)W.T. Parke: Musical Memoirs (London, 1830)C.F. Pohl: Mozart und Haydn in London (Vienna, 1867/R), ii, 372F. Grandaur: Chronik des königlichen Hof- und Nationaltheaters in München...

Article

Lejeune, Iry  

Barry Jean Ancelet

(b Pointe Noire, nr Church Point, LA, Oct 28, 1928; d nr Eunice, LA, Oct 8, 1955). American accordionist, vocalist, and songwriter. He was one of the most influential musicians in Cajun music. Born into a musical family, which also included Angelas, Rodney, Vinesse, Eddie, Homer, and Felton Lejeune, Iry was nearly blind and thus hard to employ. Music allowed him to support his family, with whom he lived in his adopted hometown of Lacassine. He was a prolific songwriter, adapting many songs from the earlier repertoire of Amédé Ardoin. In his teens when World War II ended, he led the return of the diatonic accordion in Cajun music, which had dropped the instrument and the French language in favor of western swing and country music, and the English language, which attended the Americanization of the 1930s. In 1948, he went with Virgil Bozman’s Oklahoma Tornadoes to Houston to record “Love Bridge Waltz” and “Evangeline Special” for Opera Records, in French and in a style that harked back to the traditional sounds of earlier in the century. The record was surprisingly popular, especially among Cajuns who were increasingly concerned about drifting away from their cultural and linguistic heritage. He recorded all of his subsequent records with Eddie Shuler of Goldband Records of Lake Charles, Louisiana. He became a mainstay on the Cajun dance circuit, and though he recorded only a couple of dozen more sides before he died in an automobile accident, they are virtually all still being played by contemporary Cajun and Creole musicians. He was a poetic lyricist, a soulful vocalist, and a virtuoso accordionist, easily among the most imitated in Cajun music....

Article

Mathews, Emmett  

Barry Kernfeld

(Morris)

(b St. Louis, Dec 12, 1907; d New York, Feb 8, 1999). American saxophonist and singer. His birth year had been thought to be around 1902, but he gives December 12, 1907, on his handwritten draft registration form, and census reports and the Social Security Death Index confirm this. After working in St. Louis in the early 1920s he moved to New York, where he played with Edgar Hayes (1928) and Bill Benford (1930); he led his own bands there (1930) and in Chicago (1931). He then returned to New York and joined the band of the double bass player Charlie Turner, which later accompanied Fats Waller; Mathews may be heard playing soprano saxophone on Waller’s Fat and Greasy (1935, first issued on an untitled album on the Rarest Fats Waller label, RFW1, c1966). In 1936 he recorded with a group of Waller’s sidemen; Mathews led the sessions and sang, and took passionate soprano saxophone solos on ...

Article

Mayl, Gene  

revised by Barry Kernfeld

(b Dayton, OH, Dec 30, 1928; d Dayton, May 5, 2015). American double bass and tuba player and singer. While in France he played with Claude Luter, Claude Bolling, and Don Byas (1948–9). In 1948 he founded the Dixieland Rhythm Kings, a traditional-jazz band that performed frequently in the USA and Canada and recorded several albums, among them ...

Article

McIntosh, Sylvester  

Jonas Westover

[Blinky ]

(b Frederiksted, St. Croix, Virgin Islands, Aug 17, 1934). Crucian guitarist, saxophonist, band leader, and singer. He was the son of Ivan McIntosh, a saxophonist active during the early 20th century, and Ethel McIntosh, a singer. He learned music from them as a youth and soon joined a “scratch band,” a local ensemble feature cane flute, gourd rasp, guitar, drum, and bass. By the age of 15, he had joined his father’s group as a guitarist, learning an older repertoire and touring widely throughout the island. During this same period, McIntosh learned traditional songs from his mother, who also encouraged him to study with local storytellers and folk performers. He also joined a carnival-oriented ensemble titled the Wild Indians. By 1955 he created his own “scratch band” called the Pond Bush Hot Shots. In the 1960s he was invited to become the lead alto sax player for the Joe Parris Hot Shots, the country’s leading quadrille group, with whom he recorded into the 1970s. Although he was an active musician during his life, McIntosh labored primarily for the Department of Public Works in St. Croix, as reflected in the name of his next band, Blinky and the Roadmasters (formed in ...

Article

Miller, Taps  

Howard Rye

[Marion Joseph]

(b Indianapolis, July 22, 1912; d after 1975). American trumpeter, singer, and dancer. The birth year quoted is from his 1940 draft registration, which he signed “Joseph Taps Miller”; in the 1950s he told European interviewers he was born in 1915. From 1932 he was featured as a singer and dancer in New York shows, notably Blackbirds of 1939. In 1941 he was a master of ceremonies at Kelly’s Stable and took part in jam sessions as a drummer at Monroe’s Uptown House. He recorded as a singer with Count Basie in May 1942, and he may be seen in the soundie A Song and Dance Man (1943). In 1944–5 he toured North Africa and Asia as a member of a USO unit led by Alberta Hunter; this tour included a month’s residency in Casablanca. In the late 1940s and early 1950s Miller worked around New York; he recorded again as a singer with Basie in ...

Article

Minton, Phil(ip Watcyn)  

Mark Gilbert

revised by Simon Adams

(b Torquay, England, Nov 2, 1940). English singer and trumpeter. He took up trumpet at the age of 15 and later played in Torquay with a quintet led by the tenor saxophonist Brian Waldron (1959–61). In 1962 he moved to London, where he performed as a trumpeter and a singer with the Mike Westbrook Orchestra, then in 1964–5 he sang and played in Los Palmas in the Canary Islands with the English group Jonston Macphilbry. Between 1966 and 1971 Minton lived in Sweden, working with a dance band. After returning to London he re-joined Westbrook and until 1990 took part in most of the leader’s projects; he may be seen in the film documentary Mike Westbrook: Jazz Composer (1978) and in numerous other television broadcasts and films with Westbrook. In the mid-1970s he also worked with the groups Welfare State (with Lol Coxhill) and IOU and formed the ensemble Voice with Maggie Nicols and Julie Tippetts (...

Article

Oliver, Sy  

Eddy Determeyer

[Melvin James ]

(b Battle Creek, MI, Dec 17, 1910; d New York, NY, May 28, 1988). American arranger, composer, producer, bandleader, trumpeter, and singer. Growing up as an African American musician in Zanesville, Ohio, Oliver was self taught as a trumpeter and arranger. After playing in territory bands in and around Zanesville and Columbus, he became a member of Jimmie Lunceford’s orchestra in 1933. His charts for the Lunceford band were distinguished by contrasts, crescendos, and unexpected melodic variations, thereby setting new standards in big band swing and close-harmony singing. His use of two-beat rhythms also set his arrangements apart.

In 1939 Oliver was hired by the trombonist Tommy Dorsey and turned his band into one of the hardest swinging and most sophisticated ensembles of the early 1940s. In 1946 he started his own big band. During the late 1940s and 1950s he mainly did studio work, as a music director for the labels Decca, Bethlehem, and Jubilee. He continued to lead big bands and smaller ensembles, recycling his old Lunceford and Dorsey successes and performing new arrangements. Along with Duke Ellington and Fletcher Henderson, Oliver must be rated one of the top arrangers of the swing era and infused almost every chart with vigor and surprise....

Article

Page, Hot Lips  

John Chilton

[Oran Thaddeus ]

(b Dallas, TX, Jan 27, 1908; d New York, NY, Nov 5, 1954). American jazz trumpeter and singer. He worked as a professional musician in his home state of Texas during the 1920s and later maintained that he learned to play authentic blues by listening to the local performers there. He played with Walter Page’s Blue Devils (1928–30) then with Bennie Moten’s band (1931–3 and 1934). In 1936 he worked briefly with Count Basie’s band as a principal soloist, but left to become a solo artist at the behest of Louis Armstrong’s manager Joe Glaser, a move generally regarded as having hurt a potentially illustrious career. Page gained much publicity during a brief stay with Artie Shaw’s band (1941–2). He also made many fine recordings under his own name (1938–54), often leading bands with some of the finest swing musicians, including Earl Bostic, Don Byas, J.C. Higginbotham, and Ben Webster, among his sidemen. His purposeful, exciting trumpet playing and deeply felt blues singing were probably too rugged to gain widespread favor. Throughout his career he thrived on the atmosphere of impromptu jam sessions, in which his searing tone, dramatic phrasing, and improvised blues lyrics were a source of considerable inspiration to fellow musicians....

Article

Pastor, Tony  

Mark Tucker

(bandleader, singer and saxophonist)

(b Middletown, CT, Oct 26, 1907; d Old Lyme, CT, Oct 31, 1969). American bandleader, singer, and saxophonist. He began playing as a sideman in the orchestras of John Cavallaro, Irving Aaronson, and Vincent Lopez, before joining Artie Shaw’s band (1936), in which he was a tenor saxophone soloist and singer; “Indian Love Call” (1938, B♭) offers a good example of his throaty, somewhat gruff vocal style. After Shaw dissolved the band Pastor formed his own in 1940, taking some of Shaw’s players with him. Many of the group’s arrangements were written by the guitarist Al Avola, although Budd Johnson, Walter Fuller, and Ralph Flanagan also made contributions. Pastor’s singing was greatly influenced, he acknowledged, by Louis Armstrong and was always an important part of his shows. In the late 1940s Pastor also performed with Betty and Rosemary Clooney. He broke up his big band in ...

Article

Pepper, Jim  

John-Carlos Perea

[James Gilbert ]

(b Salem, OR, June 18, 1941; d Portland, OR, Feb 10, 1992). American tenor and soprano saxophonist, singer, bandleader, and composer. Of Native American (Creek and Kaw) heritage, he was raised in Oregon and Oklahoma. Early musical influences included tap dance, big band jazz, Southern Plains powwow music and dance, and peyote music. Pepper moved to New York in 1964 and joined the Free Spirits (1966), an early fusion jazz ensemble featuring Larry Coryell and Bob Moses. After forming the group Everything is Everything (1967) with former members of Free Spirits Chris Hills and Columbus Baker, Pepper recorded “Witchi Tai To,” a composition fusing a peyote song with jazz, rock, and country influences. Released on Everything is Everything featuring Chris Hills (Vanguard Apostolic, 1969), “Witchi Tai To” peaked at number 69 on the Billboard pop charts. By 2011 it had been covered by at least 90 artists ranging from Brewer & Shipley, Jan Garbarek, and Oregon to the Paul Winter Consort and Joy Harjo. Pepper released four albums as a leader: ...