Hill, (William) Alex(ander)
- James M. Doran
(b North Little Rock, AR, April 19, 1906; d North Little Rock, Feb 1, 1937). Arranger, pianist, and singer. He studied piano with his mother. After working with Alphonso Trent he organized his own group (1924) and played in studios in Hollywood while working in local bands, among them Mutt Carey’s Jeffersonians. In Chicago he arranged Beau Koo Jack for Louis Armstrong’s recording with his Savoy Ballroom Five (1928); he also performed with and wrote arrangements for Jimmy Wade (1928), played with Jimmie Noone (1928–9), and worked as an arranger for Earl Hines and Paul Howard (both 1929). He then joined the bandleader Sammy Stewart (1929), with whom he traveled to New York (1930). In the early 1930s Hill became known as one of the best arrangers in Harlem, and he worked with Benny Carter, Claude Hopkins, and Andy Kirk (all ...