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Jazz Music

Biographies


  • Art Blakey

    Art BlakeyArt Blakey’s death in 1990 brought to a close a remarkable and multifaceted career; not only was he one of the most influential jazz drummers of his day, but he was also something of a father figure to dozens of aspiring jazz musicians. His group the Jazz Messengers, which he led for nearly 35 years, served as an incubator for talents as diverse as trumpeter Wynton Marsalis and pianist Keith Jarrett. The vast catalog of recordings he left behind documents the development of his trendsetting drumming style, and perhaps more significantly, the evolving sound of his ensemble, which, though its membership was continually in flux, always maintained Blakey’s mandate to create first-rate jazz that would, as he remarked in an interview in The Black Perspective in Music, "wash away the dust of everyday life."

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  • Stanley Clarke

    Stanley ClarkeThe traditional role of the bass was largely one of time-keeping that sonically filled out the spectrum. Clarke says: “Before I came along a lot of bass players stood in the back. They were very quiet kind of guys who didn’t appear to write music. But many of those bass players were serious musicians. All that I did was just take the step and create my own band.”

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  • Dizzie Gillespie

    Диззи Гиллеспи (Dizzy Gillespie)Famed jazz trumpeter and composer Dizzie Gillespie was born John Birks Gillespie on October 21, 1917, in Cheraw, South Carolina. He would go on to become one of the most recognizable faces of jazz music, with his "swollen" cheeks and signature (uniquely angled) trumpet's bell, as well as one of the most influential figures of jazz and bebop.

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  • Wynton Marsalis

    Wynton MarsalisWynton Marsalis is an internationally acclaimed musician, composer, bandleader, educator and a leading advocate of American culture. He is the world’s first jazz artist to perform and compose across the full jazz spectrum from its New Orleans roots to bebop to modern jazz. By creating and performing an expansive range of brilliant new music for quartets to big bands, chamber music ensembles to symphony orchestras, tap dance to ballet, Wynton has expanded the vocabulary for jazz and created a vital body of work that places him among the world’s finest musicians and composers.

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  • Barney Kessel

    Barney Kessel Legendary musician, guitarist, influential jazz artist, composer, arranger, session player, record producer, one of the leading figures in West Coast jazz, later delving into hard bop, Barney Kessel is now generally considered by fans, critics and fellow musicians around the world to be arguably one of the greatest guitarists of all time.

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