Paul Laurence Dunbar Chambers, Jr. was a jazz double bassist. A fixture of rhythm sections during the 1950s and 1960s, his importance in the development of jazz bass can be measured not only by the extent of his work in this short period, but by his impeccable timekeeping and intonation, virtuosic improvisations, he was known for his bowed solos. Chambers recorded about a dozen albums as a leader or co-leader, as a sideman, notably as the anchor of trumpeter Miles Davis's "first great quintet" and with pianist Wynton Kelly. Born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania on April 22, 1935, to Paul Lawrence Chambers and Margaret Echos, he was brought up in Michigan following the death of his mother. He began playing music with several of his schoolmates on the baritone horn, he took up the tuba. "I got along pretty well, but it's quite a job to carry it around in those long parades, I didn't like the instrument that much". Chambers became a string bassist around 1949, his formal bass training began in earnest in 1952, when he began taking lessons with a bassist of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.
Chambers did some classical playing himself, with a rehearsal group called the Detroit String Band. He studied at Cass Technical High School intermittently from 1952 to 1955, played in Cass' symphony, in various other student groups, in one of which he played baritone saxophone; when he left for New York City at the invitation of tenor saxophonist Paul Quinichette, he had a working knowledge of many instruments. Jazz bass players were limited to timekeeping with drums, until Duke Ellington's bassist Jimmy Blanton began a transformation in the instrument's role at the end of the 1930s. Chambers was about 15 years old when he started to listen to Charlie Parker and Bud Powell, his first jazz influences. Oscar Pettiford and Ray Brown were the first bassists he admired, these were followed by Percy Heath, Milt Hinton and Wendell Marshall for their rhythm section work, Charles Mingus and George Duvivier for their technical prowess and for their efforts in broadening the scope of jazz bass. Blanton was his all-time favorite.
Chambers played his first gig at a bar in the Hastings Street area. He played in clubs with Thad Jones, Barry Harris and others. From 1954 on through 1955, he gained significance touring with such musicians as Bennie Green, George Wallington, J. J. Johnson and Kai Winding. In 1955 he joined the Miles Davis quintet and stayed with the group until 1963, he appeared including Kind of Blue. One of Chambers's most noted performances was on that album's first track, "So What", which opens with a brief duet featuring Chambers and pianist Bill Evans. Chambers' contribution on Kind of Blue is considered to be some of the most rhythmically and harmonically supportive bass playing in the history of jazz. From 1963 until 1968 Chambers played with the Wynton Kelly trio, he freelanced as a sideman for other important names in jazz throughout his career. During the course of his lifetime Paul Chambers developed addictions to both heroin, he was hospitalized at the end of 1968 with what was thought to be a severe case of influenza, but tests revealed that he in fact had tuberculosis.
As his organ functions deteriorated, Chambers lapsed into a coma for 18 days. It is believed that his addictions to alcoholism contributed to his health problems. On January 4, 1969 he died of tuberculosis aged 33. Chambers' accompaniment and solos with Davis and other leaders remain influential, he and Slam Stewart were among the first jazz bassists to perform bowed features. From his role in the Davis band, Chambers was the bassist in two rhythm sections; the first, with Red Garland on piano and Philly Joe Jones on drums, came to be known as "the rhythm section," that name featured on a celebrated album by saxophonist Art Pepper, Art Pepper Meets the Rhythm Section. The second, with Wynton Kelly and Jimmy Cobb, made many sessions as a unit, recording albums with John Coltrane, Wes Montgomery, by themselves under Kelly's name on albums such as Kelly Blue. Paul Chambers was in great demand as a session musician, played on numerous albums during the period he was active including such landmarks as Thelonious Monk's Brilliant Corners, Coltrane's Giant Steps, Oliver Nelson's The Blues and the Abstract Truth.
Many musicians wrote songs dedicated to Chambers. Long-time fellow Davis bandmate, pianist Red Garland, wrote the tune "The P. C. Blues", Coltrane's song "Mr. P. C." is named after Chambers. Tommy Flanagan wrote "Big Paul", performed on the Kenny Burrell and John Coltrane Prestige 1958 LP. Max Roach wrote a drum solo called "Five For Paul", on a 1977 drum solo LP recorded in Japan, Sonny Rollins wrote "Paul's Pal" for him as well. In an interview fellow bassist Charlie Haden recalled his admiration to Chambers: "he first guy, distinctive to me—when I was 19 or so—was Paul Chambers, who I heard on all those Prestige and Riverside records. There’s an underrated player! He had a way of playing chromatic notes in his bass lines, just unreal, he would go up into the high register, skip down, tying it together… He had this great sound, this great time." Chambers' Music Whims Of Chambers Westlake Bounce The Music Of John Graas Paul Chambers Quintet Bass on Top High Step We Three 1st Bassman Go! Paul Chambers discography at Discogs Paul Chambers on IMDb Paul Chambers at Find a Grave
Bernard "Buddy" Rich was an American jazz drummer and bandleader. He is considered one of the most influential drummers of all time and was known for his virtuoso technique and speed, he performed with Tommy Dorsey, Harry James and Count Basie, led a big band. Rich was born in Sheepshead Bay, New York, to Jewish-American parents Bess Skolnik and Robert Rich, both vaudevillians; as a kid, when he was at a restaurant with his parents, he used the fork as drum sticks. Before he turned two, he was part of his parents' act on vaudeville, but on breaks he would sneak into the orchestra pit and try to get the drummer's sticks, he was on Broadway as Baby Traps the Drum Wonder at age four, playing "Stars and Stripes Forever" on a drum. He was a tap dancer. In his teens he led a band and toured in the U. S. and Australia. At fifteen he became the second highest paid child entertainer behind Jackie Coogan during the 1930s, his jazz career began in 1937 with clarinetist Joe Marsala. He became a member of big bands led by Artie Shaw.
When he was home from touring with Shaw, he gave drum lessons to a 14-year-old Mel Brooks for six months. At 21, he participated in his first major recording with the Vic Schoen Orchestra who backed the Andrews Sisters. In 1942 he joined the United States Marine Corps, he was discharged for medical reasons. After leaving the Marines, he returned to the Dorsey band. In 1946, with financial support from Frank Sinatra, he formed a band and continued to lead bands intermittently until the early 1950s. In addition to Tommy Dorsey, Rich played with Benny Carter, Harry James, Les Brown, Charlie Ventura, Jazz at the Philharmonic, Charlie Parker. From 1966 until his death, he led successful big bands in an era, he continued to play clubs but stated in interviews that the majority of his band's performances were at high schools and universities rather than clubs. He was a session drummer for many recordings, where his playing was more understated than in his big-band performances. Notable were sessions for Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong and the Oscar Peterson trio with bassist Ray Brown and guitarist Herb Ellis.
In 1968, Rich collaborated with the Indian tabla player Ustad Alla Rakha on the album Rich à la Rakha. He performed a big-band arrangement of a medley from West Side Story, released on the 1966 album Swingin' New Big Band; the "West Side Story Medley" is a complex big-band arrangement which highlights Rich's ability to blend the rhythm of his drumming into his band's playing of the musical chart. Penned by Bill Reddie, Rich received the West Side Story arrangement of Leonard Bernstein's melodies from the famed musical in the mid-1960s and found it challenging, it consists of many difficult sections which feature 6/8 time signatures. It became a staple in all his performances, clocking in at various lengths from seven to fifteen minutes. In 2002, a DVD was released called The Lost West Side Story Tapes that captured a 1985 performance of this along with other numbers. A live recording of the "Channel One Suite" is on the album Mercy, Mercy recorded at Caesars Palace in 1968; the album received acclaim as the "finest all-round recording by Buddy Rich's big band".
In the 1950s Rich was a frequent guest on The Steve Allen Show and other television variety shows, most notably on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson where he was a frequent guest. Rich and Johnny were lifelong friends and Johnny Carson was a drum enthusiast himself. In 1973 PBS broadcast and syndicated Rich's February 6, 1973, performance at the Top of the Plaza in Rochester, New York, it was the first time thousands of drummers were exposed to Buddy in a full-length concert setting, many drummers continue to name this program as a prime influence on their own playing. One of his most seen television performances was in a 1981 episode of The Muppet Show in which he engaged Muppet drummer "Animal" in a drum battle. Rich's famous televised drum battles included Gene Krupa, Ed Shaughnessy and Louie Bellson. Rich was married to Marie Allison, a dancer and showgirl on April 24, 1953, until his death in 1987; the marriage produced one child in 1954, daughter Cathy, who became a vocalist and carried on her father's band.
Rich was cousin of actor Jonathan Haze. He lived in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Rich continued performing until the end of his life. In early March 1987, he was touring in New York when he was hospitalized after suffering a paralysis on his left side that physicians believed had been caused by a stroke, he was transferred to California to UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles for tests, where doctors discovered and removed a brain tumor on March 16. He was discharged a week but had been receiving daily chemotherapy treatments at the hospital when, on April 2, 1987, he died of unexpected respiratory and cardiac failure after his treatment for the malignant brain tumor, his wife Marie and daughter Cathy buried him in Westwood Village Memorial Park Cemetery in Los Angeles. He was 69. Rich had a notoriously short temper. Singer Dusty Springfield slapped him after several days of "putting up with Rich's insults and show-biz sabotage", he held a rivalry with Frank Sinatra which sometimes ended in brawls when both were members of Tommy Dorsey's band.
But they remained lifelong friends, Sinatra delivered a eulogy at Rich's funeral in 1987. Rich held a black belt in karate. Billy Cobham said that he met Rich in a club and asked him to sign his sna
Wynton Charles Kelly was a Jamaican American jazz pianist and composer. He is known as one of the finest accompanists in jazz, he began playing professionally at the age of 12, was pianist on a No. 1 R&B hit at the age of 16. His recording debut as leader occurred three years around the time he started to become better known as accompanist to singer Dinah Washington, as a member of trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie's band; this progress was interrupted by two years in the United States Army, after which Kelly returned to Washington and Gillespie, played with other leaders. Over the next few years, these included instrumentalists Julian "Cannonball" Adderley, John Coltrane, Roland Kirk, Wes Montgomery, Sonny Rollins, vocalists Betty Carter, Billie Holiday, Abbey Lincoln. Kelly attracted the most attention as part of Miles Davis' band from 1959, including an appearance on the trumpeter's Kind of Blue mentioned as the best-selling jazz album ever. After leaving Davis in 1963, Kelly played with his own trio, which recorded for several labels and toured the United States and internationally.
His career did not develop much further, he had difficulty finding enough work late in his career. Kelly, prone to epilepsy, died in a hotel room in Canada following a seizure, aged 39; the son of Jamaican immigrants, Kelly was born in Brooklyn, New York, on December 2, 1931. He did not receive much formal training in music, he attended the High School of Music & Art and the Metropolitan Vocational High School in New York, but "hey wouldn't give us piano, so I fooled around with the bass and studied theory."Kelly started his professional career in 1943 as a member of R&B groups. Through this, he improved his playing – the bands' "music had to be accessible and easy to dance to". Around this time he played organ in local churches. In his local area, he played with brothers Lee and Ray Abrams, as well as Ahmed Abdul-Malik, Ernie Henry, Cecil Payne, who went on to have careers in jazz. At the age of 15, Kelly toured the Caribbean as part of Ray Abrams' R&B band. Kelly made his recording debut aged 16, playing on saxophonist Hal Singer's 1948 "Cornbread", which became a Billboard R&B chart-topping hit.
In the following year, Kelly recorded with vocalist Babs Gonzales. Other R&B bands that Kelly played with included those led by Hot Lips Page, Eddie "Cleanhead" Vinson, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis. Material from sessions on July 25 and August 1, 1951 formed Piano Interpretations, a trio album, Kelly's recording debut as leader, released by Blue Note Records that year. Critic Scott Yanow indicates that, at this stage of his career, Kelly's main influence was Bud Powell, but that his playing "displayed some of the joy of Teddy Wilson's style along with his own chord voicings". Kelly became better known after joining vocalist Dinah Washington's band in 1951. After this, he played in bands led by Lester Young in the spring of 1952, Dizzy Gillespie, recording with the latter in 1952. In September of that year, just as Kelly was beginning to build a reputation, he was drafted into the army. After a period at Fort McClellan in Alabama, Kelly was part of a Third Army traveling show, he recruited future jazz pianist Duke Pearson into the show.
By April 1954 Kelly was "musical director of the show. He ended his military service with a music performance for an audience of 10,000 in the Chastain Memorial Park Amphitheater in Atlanta. Kelly was released from the military after two years, following which he worked on and off with Washington and Gillespie again. Kelly was part of Charles Mingus' group for a tour of Washington, D. C. California, Vancouver in late 1956 to early 1957, he left Mingus to rejoin Gillespie, who led a big band that toured Canada and the southern United States. Commenting on Kelly's ability to move from a small group to a big band setting, saxophonist Benny Golson from Gillespie's band, said that "He kept his identity, he would set up patterns – never interfering with the arrangement, but he was able to get into the cracks and he would always be adding something, giving it impetus, more energy." In 1956, Kelly recorded with vocalist Billie Holiday, including for the original version of her song "Lady Sings the Blues", as well as for the Blue Note debuts of saxophonists Johnny Griffin and Sonny Rollins.
After leaving Gillespie again, Kelly formed his own trio. Kelly was much in demand as a sideman for recordings, appeared on albums by most of the major jazz leaders in the late 1950s and early 1960s. In April 1957, for instance, he appeared as a guest in an enlarged version of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, for an album released as Theory of Art; the recording sessions continued four days with Kelly joining Blakey and others on Griffin's A Blowin' Session. That year, Kelly made a rare appearance playing bass, for one track of vocalist Abbey Lincoln's That's Him!, after the regular bassist, Paul Chambers, became drunk and fell asleep in the studio. Early in 1958, Kelly recorded his second album as leader, the qu
John Haley "Zoot" Sims was an American jazz saxophonist, playing tenor but alto saxophone. He first gained attention in the "Four Brothers" sax section of Woody Herman's big band, afterward enjoying a long solo career in partnership with fellow saxmen Gerry Mulligan and Al Cohn, the trombonist Bob Brookmeyer. Sims was born in 1925 in California to vaudeville performers Kate Haley and John Sims, his father was a vaudeville hoofer, Sims prided himself on remembering many of the steps his father taught him. Growing up in a performing family, he learned to play drums and clarinet at an early age, his brother was the trombonist Ray Sims. Following in the footsteps of Lester Young, Sims developed into an innovative tenor saxophonist. Throughout his career, he played with big bands, starting with those of Kenny Baker and Bobby Sherwood after dropping out of high school after one year, he played with Benny Goodman's band in 1943 and replaced his idol Ben Webster in Sid Catlett's Quartet in 1944. Sims served as a corporal in the United States Army Air Force from 1944 to 1946 returned to music in the bands of Artie Shaw, Stan Kenton, Buddy Rich.
He was one of Woody Herman's "Four Brothers". He led his own combos and toured with his friend Gerry Mulligan's sextet, with Mulligan's Concert Jazz Band. Sims rejoined Goodman in 1962 for a tour of the Soviet Union. In the 1950s and'60s, Sims had a long, successful partnership as co-leader of a quintet with Al Cohn, which recorded under the name "Al and Zoot"; the group was a favorite at New York City's Half Note Club. Always fond of the higher register of the tenor sax, he played alto and late in his career added soprano saxophone to his performances, while recording a series of albums for the Pablo Records label of the impresario Norman Granz, he played on some of Jack Kerouac's recordings. Sims acquired the nickname "Zoot" early in his career while he was in the Kenny Baker band in California; the name was appropriated for a saxophone-playing Muppet on The Muppet Show. Sims played a 30-second solo on the song "Poetry Man", written by singer Phoebe Snow on her debut eponymous album in 1975..
He played on Laura Nyro's "Lonely Women," on her album "Eli and the Thirteenth Confession." Zoot Sims died of cancer on March 23, 1985 in New York City, is buried in Oak Hill Cemetery, in Nyack, New York. 1949: The Brothers, with Stan Getz and Al Cohn 1950-1954: Zootcase 2 LPs, released 1975 1950: Quartet In Paris 1950-1951: Zoot Sims Quartets two LPs 1953: Zoot Sims All Stars with Kai Winding, Al Cohn George Wallington Percy Heath, Art Blakey 1954: Zoot Sims Quintet with Stu Williamson - reissued as most of Good Old Zoot 12-inch LP 1955: Nashville with Dick Nash 1956: The Modern Art of Jazz by Zoot Sims 1956: From A to... Z with Al Cohn 1956: Tonite's Music Today with Bob Brookmeyer 1956: Whooeeee with Bob Brookmeyer 1956: Zoot Sims – with Henri Renaud and Jon Eardley Americans Swinging In Paris CD 1956: Zoot! with Nick Travis 1956: Tenor Conclave with John Coltrane, Al Cohn, Hank Mobley, Red Garland, Paul Chambers, Art Taylor 1956: Jutta Hipp with Zoot Sims with Jutta Hipp 1956: Goes to Jazzville with Jerry Lloyd, John Williams, Knoby Tohah, Bill Anthony 1956: Live at Falcon Lair with Joe Castro released 2004 1956-1957: Bohemia After Dark released 1994 1957: Zoot Sims Plays Alto and Baritone That Old Feeling, double-issue CD of two 1956 albums 1957: Hoagy Carmichael Sessions and More with Al Cohn, Nick Travis and Milt Hinton - complete session plus 1961 live date with Mose Allison released in 2005 1957: The Four Brothers...
Together Again! with Serge Chaloff and Herbie Steward 1957: Al and Zoot 1957: Locking Horns with Joe Newman 1958: Stretching Out with Bob Brookmeyer 1959: The Swingers! with Lambert, Hendricks & Ross 1959: Jazz Alive! A Night at the Half Note with Al Cohn and Phil Woods 1959: A Gasser! with Annie Ross 1959-1960: Either Way with Al Cohn, Cecil Colier, Bill Crow, Mose Allison - released 1961 1960: You'n' Me with Al Cohn 1960: Down Home with Dave McKenna and George Tucker 1961: Either Way with Al Cohn 1961: Choice with Bob Brookmeyer, Gerry Mulligan, Jim Hall 1962: New Beat Bossa Nova 1962: New Beat Bossa Nova Vol. 2 1962: Zoot at Ronnie Scott's 1962: Solo for Zoot 1964: Two Jims and Zoot with Jimmy Raney and Jim Hall - released as Outra Vez 1965: Inter-Action with Sonny Stitt 1965: Suitably Zoot 1965: Al and Zoot in London with Al Cohn 1965: At the Half Note Again with Al Cohn, Richie Kamuca, Roger Kellaway, Mel Lewis 1966: Waiting Game 1967: The Greatest Jazz Concert in the World 1968: Easy as Pie: Live at the Left Bank with Al Cohn - released in 2001 1973: Body and Soul with Jaki Byard and George Duvivier 1973: Zoot Suite, with Jimmy Rowles, George Mraz, Mousey Alexander released 2007 1973: Joe & Zoot with Joe Venuti and Bucky Pizzarelli 1974: Zoot Sims' Party 1974: Nirvana with Bucky Pizzarelli and special guest Buddy Rich 1974: Strike Up the Band with Bobby Hackett and Bucky Pizzarelli 1974: Dave McKenna Quartet Featuring Zoot
John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie was an American jazz trumpeter, bandleader and singer. Gillespie was a trumpet virtuoso and improviser, building on the virtuoso style of Roy Eldridge but adding layers of harmonic and rhythmic complexity unheard in jazz, his combination of musicianship and wit made him a leading popularizer of the new music called bebop. His beret and horn-rimmed spectacles, his scat singing, his bent horn, pouched cheeks, his light-hearted personality provided some of bebop's most prominent symbols. In the 1940s Gillespie, with Charlie Parker, became a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz, he taught and influenced many other musicians, including trumpeters Miles Davis, Jon Faddis, Fats Navarro, Clifford Brown, Arturo Sandoval, Lee Morgan, Chuck Mangione, balladeer Johnny Hartman. Scott Yanow wrote, "Dizzy Gillespie's contributions to jazz were huge. One of the greatest jazz trumpeters of all time, Gillespie was such a complex player that his contemporaries ended up being similar to those of Miles Davis and Fats Navarro instead, it was not until Jon Faddis's emergence in the 1970s that Dizzy's style was recreated Arguably Gillespie is remembered, by both critics and fans alike, as one of the greatest jazz trumpeters of all time".
The youngest of nine children of James and Lottie Gillespie, Dizzy Gillespie was born in Cheraw, South Carolina. His father was a local bandleader, so instruments were made available to the children. Gillespie started to play the piano at the age of four. Gillespie's father died, he taught himself. From the night he heard his idol, Roy Eldridge, on the radio, he dreamed of becoming a jazz musician, he won a music scholarship to the Laurinburg Institute in North Carolina which he attended for two years before accompanying his family when they moved to Philadelphia. Gillespie's first professional job was with the Frank Fairfax Orchestra in 1935, after which he joined the respective orchestras of Edgar Hayes and Teddy Hill, replacing Frankie Newton as second trumpet in May 1937. Teddy Hill's band was where Gillespie made his first recording, "King Porter Stomp". In August 1937 while gigging with Hayes in Washington D. C. Gillespie met a young dancer named Lorraine Willis who worked a Baltimore–Philadelphia–New York City circuit which included the Apollo Theater.
Willis was not friendly but Gillespie was attracted anyway. The two married on May 9, 1940, they remained married until his death in 1993. Gillespie stayed with Teddy Hill's band for a year left and free-lanced with other bands. In 1939, he joined Cab Calloway's orchestra, with which he recorded one of his earliest compositions, "Pickin' the Cabbage", in 1940. After a notorious altercation between the two men, Calloway fired Gillespie in late 1941; the incident is recounted by Gillespie and Calloway's band members Milt Hinton and Jonah Jones in Jean Bach's 1997 film, The Spitball Story. Calloway his adventuresome approach to soloing. According to Jones, Calloway referred to it as "Chinese music". During rehearsal, someone in the band threw a spitball. In a foul mood, Calloway blamed Gillespie, who refused to take the blame. Gillespie stabbed Calloway in the leg with a knife. Calloway had minor cuts on the wrist. After the two men were separated, Calloway fired Gillespie. A few days Gillespie tried to apologize to Calloway, but he was dismissed.
During his time in Calloway's band, Gillespie started writing big band music for Woody Herman and Jimmy Dorsey. He freelanced with a few bands, most notably Ella Fitzgerald's orchestra, composed of members of the Chick Webb's band. Gillespie did not serve in World War II. At his Selective Service interview, he told the local board, "in this stage of my life here in the United States whose foot has been in my ass?" He was classified 4-F. In 1943, he joined the Earl Hines band. Composer Gunther Schuller said... In 1943 I heard the great Earl Hines band which had Bird in all those other great musicians, they were playing all the flatted fifth chords and all the modern harmonies and substitutions and Gillespie runs in the trumpet section work. Two years I read that that was'bop' and the beginning of modern jazz... but the band never made recordings. Gillespie said of the Hines band, "eople talk about the Hines band being'the incubator of bop' and the leading exponents of that music ended up in the Hines band.
But people have the erroneous impression that the music was new. It was not; the music evolved from. It was the same basic music; the difference was in how you got from here to here to here... each age has got its own shit."Gillespie joined the big band of Hines' long-time collaborator Billy Eckstine, it was as a member of Eckstine's band that he was reunited with Charlie Parker, a fellow member. In 1945, Gillespie left Eckstine's band. A "small combo" comprised no more than five musicians, playing the trumpet, piano and drums. Bebop was known as the first modern jazz style. However, it was not viewed as positively as swing music was. Bebop was seen as an outgrowth of swing, not a revolution. Swing introduced a diversity of new musicians in the bebop era like Charlie Parker, Thelonious Monk, Bud Powell, Kenny Clarke, Oscar Pettiford, Gillespie. Through these musicians, a new vocabulary of musical phrases was created. With Parker, Gillespie jammed at famous jazz clubs like Minton's Playhouse and Monroe's Uptown House.
Parker's system held methods of adding ch
Sheldon Manne, professionally known as Shelly Manne, was an American jazz drummer. Most associated with West Coast jazz, he was known for his versatility and played in a number of other styles, including Dixieland, bebop, avant-garde jazz and fusion, as well as contributing to the musical background of hundreds of Hollywood films and television programs. Manne's father and uncles were drummers. In his youth he admired many of the leading swing drummers of the day Jo Jones and Dave Tough. Billy Gladstone, a colleague of Manne's father and the most admired percussionist on the New York theatrical scene, offered the teenage Shelly tips and encouragement. From that time, Manne developed his style in the clubs of 52nd Street in New York in the late 1930s and 1940s, his first professional job with a known big band was with the Bobby Byrne Orchestra in 1940. In those years, as he became known, he recorded with jazz stars like Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Shavers, Don Byas, he worked with a number of musicians associated with Duke Ellington, like Johnny Hodges, Harry Carney, Lawrence Brown, Rex Stewart.
In 1943, Manne married. The marriage would last 41 years, until the end of Manne's life; when the bebop movement began to change jazz in the 1940s, Manne loved it and adapted to the style performing with Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker. Around this time he worked with rising stars like Flip Phillips, Charlie Ventura, Lennie Tristano, Lee Konitz. Manne rose to stardom when he became part of the working bands of Woody Herman and Stan Kenton in the late 1940s and early 1950s, winning awards and developing a following at a time when jazz was the most popular music in the United States. Joining the hard-swinging Herman outfit allowed Manne to play the bebop he loved; the controversial Kenton band, on the other hand, with its "progressive jazz", presented obstacles, many of the complex, overwrought arrangements made it harder to swing. But Manne appreciated the musical freedom that Kenton gave him and saw it as an opportunity to experiment along with what was still a innovative band, he rose to the challenge, finding new colors and rhythms, developing his ability to provide support in a variety of musical situations.
In the early 1950s, Manne left New York and settled permanently on a ranch in an outlying part of Los Angeles, where he and his wife raised horses. From this point on, he played an important role in the West Coast school of jazz, performing on the Los Angeles jazz scene with Shorty Rogers, Hampton Hawes, Red Mitchell, Art Pepper, Russ Freeman, Frank Rosolino, Chet Baker, Leroy Vinnegar, Pete Jolly, Howard McGhee, Bob Gordon, Conte Candoli, Sonny Criss, numerous others. Many of his recordings around this time were for Lester Koenig's Contemporary Records, where for a period Manne had a contract as an "exclusive" artist. Manne led a number of small groups that recorded under his leadership. One consisting of Manne on drums, trumpeter Joe Gordon, saxophonist Richie Kamuca, bassist Monty Budwig, pianist Victor Feldman performed for three days in 1959 at the Black Hawk club in San Francisco, their music was recorded on the spot, four LPs were issued. Regarded as an innovative example of a "live" jazz recording, the Black Hawk sessions were reissued on CD in augmented form years later.
Manne is associated with the once criticized West Coast school of jazz. He has been considered "the quintessential" drummer in what was seen as a West Coast movement, though Manne himself did not care to be so pigeonholed. In the 1950s, much of what he did could be seen as in the West Coast style: performing in arranged compositions in what was a cool style, as in his 1953 album named The West Coast Sound, for which he commissioned several original compositions; some of West Coast jazz was experimental, avant-garde music several years before the more mainstream avant-garde playing of Cecil Taylor and Ornette Coleman. Critics would condemn much of this music as overly cerebral. Another side of West Coast jazz that came under critical fire was music in a lighter style, intended for popular consumption. Manne made contributions here too. Best known is the series of albums he recorded with pianist André Previn and with members of his groups, based on music from popular Broadway shows and television programs.
The recordings for the Contemporary label, with each album devoted to a single musical, are in a light appealing style aimed at popular taste. This did not always go over well with aficionados of "serious" jazz, which may be one reason why Manne has been overlooked in accounts of major jazz drummers of the 20th century. Much of the music produced on the West Coast in those years, as Robert Gordon concedes, was in fact imitative and "lacked the fire and intensity associated with the best jazz performances", but Gordon points out that there is a level of musical sophistication, as well as an intensity and "swing", in the music recorded by Manne with Previn and Vinnegar, missing in the many lackluster albums of this type produced by others in that period. West Coast jazz, represented only a small part of Manne's playing. In Los Angeles, returning to New York and elsewhere, Manne recorded with musicians of all
Savoy Records is an American record company and label established by Herman Lubinsky in 1942 in Newark, New Jersey. Savoy specialized in jazz and blues, gospel music. In September 2017, Savoy was acquired by Concord Bicycle Music. In the 1940s Savoy recorded some of the biggest names in jazz: Miles Davis, Erroll Garner, Dexter Gordon, J. J. Johnson, Fats Navarro, Charlie Parker. In 1948, it began buying other labels: Bop, Discovery and Regent, it reissued music from Jewel Records. In the early 1960s, Savoy recorded a number of avant-garde jazz artists, giving them important early exposure, they included Paul Bley, Ed Curran, Bill Dixon, Mark Levin, Charles Moffett, Perry Robinson, Joseph Scianni, Archie Shepp, Sun Ra, Marzette Watts, Valdo Williams. After Lubinsky's death in 1974, Clive Davis manager of Arista Records, acquired Savoy's catalogue. After that, Joe Fields of Muse Records purchased the catelogue from Arista. In 1986 Malaco Records acquired Savoy's black gospel contracts. In 2003, Savoy Jazz acquired the rights to the Landmark catalogues from 32 Jazz.
As of 2012, the Savoy library is controlled by Nippon Columbia, a public company based in Tokyo, which purchased Savoy in 1991. Nippon Columbia's wholly owned subsidiary, Savoy Jazz, handled Savoy Records distribution in the United States until 2009, when it entered a distribution arrangement with Warner Music Group. Many of the label's African-American artists begrudged the label's founder, Herman Lubinsky, feeling underpaid for their work. Tiny Price, a journalist for the African-American newspaper The Newark Herald News, said of Savoy and Lubinsky: There's no doubt everybody hated Herman Lubinsky. If he messed with you, you were messed. At the same time, some of those people, many of them Newark's top singers and musicians, would never have been exposed on records if he didn't do what he did. Except for Lubinsky, all the hot little numbers, like Buddy Johnson's "Cherry", would have been lost; the man may have been hated. Savoy's artistic directors included Buck Ram, Teddy Reig, Ralph Bass, Fred Mendelsohn, Ozzie Cadena.
The following are 12" LPs and have the prefix MG. Acorn Records Gospel Records Regent Records Sharp Records List of record labels Michel; the Savoy label: a discography. Discographies, no. 2. Greenwood Press. ISBN 0-31321199-X. LCCN 79007727. OCLC 5353729. Retrieved 24 August 2014. Official website SavoyJazz.com Savoy Records Discography Project Savoy Records on the Internet Archive's Great 78 Project