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date: 20 February 2020

Bluiett, Hamietlocked

  • Barry Long

Extract

(b Lovejoy, nr East St. Louis, IL, Sept 16, 1940: d Oct 4, 2018). American jazz baritone saxophonist. He grew up outside of St. Louis in a musical family. His aunt, a choir director, gave him piano lessons as a young child before he switched to trumpet and eventually clarinet at the age of nine. He briefly attended Southern Illinois University, studying flute and picking up baritone saxophone, before joining the navy in 1959. After serving his enlistment in military bands, Bluiett moved to St. Louis and began playing mostly baritone saxophone with Julius Hemphill, Oliver Lake, and Lester and Joseph Bowie. Together with Hemphill he founded the Black Artists Group, an interdisciplinary arts collective. After moving to New York (1969) he played with Olatunji, the Thad Jones–Mel Lewis Orchestra, Sam Rivers’ large ensemble, and Charles Mingus’ quintet (1972–4). While with Mingus he also worked with Abdullah Ibrahim’s big band and recorded alongside Hemphill and Lake for Anthony Braxton (...

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