|Birth name||Bennett Lester Carter|
|Born||August 8, 1907|
Harlem, New York, United States
|Died||July 12, 2003 95) (aged|
Los Angeles, California
|Occupation(s)||Musician, bandleader, composer, musical arranger|
|Instruments||Saxophone, trumpet, clarinet|
|Labels||Clef, Norgran, Verve, Pablo, Concord, MusicMasters|
Bennett Lester Carter (August 8, 1907 – July 12, 2003) was an American jazz saxophonist, clarinetist, trumpeter, composer, arranger, and bandleader. With Johnny Hodges, he was a pioneer on the alto saxophone. From the beginning of his career in the 1920s he was a popular arranger, having written charts for Fletcher Henderson's big band that shaped the swing style. He had an unusually long career that lasted into the 1990s. During the 1980s and '90s, he was nominated for eight Grammy Awards, which included receiving a Lifetime Achievement Award.
Jazz is a music genre that originated in the African-American communities of New Orleans, United States. It originated in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and developed from roots in blues and ragtime. Jazz is seen by many as "America's classical music". Since the 1920s Jazz Age, jazz has become recognized as a major form of musical expression. It then emerged in the form of independent traditional and popular musical styles, all linked by the common bonds of African-American and European-American musical parentage with a performance orientation. Jazz is characterized by swing and blue notes, call and response vocals, polyrhythms and improvisation. Jazz has roots in West African cultural and musical expression, and in African-American music traditions including blues and ragtime, as well as European military band music. Intellectuals around the world have hailed jazz as "one of America's original art forms".
Cornelius "Johnny" Hodges was an American alto saxophonist, best known for solo work with Duke Ellington's big band. He played lead alto in the saxophone section for many years. Hodges was also featured on soprano saxophone, but refused to play soprano after 1946. He is considered one of the definitive alto saxophone players of the big band era.
James Fletcher Hamilton Henderson Jr. was an American pianist, bandleader, arranger and composer, important in the development of big band jazz and swing music. He was one of the most prolific black musical arrangers and, along with Duke Ellington, is considered one of the most influential arrangers and bandleaders in jazz history. Henderson's influence was vast. He helped bridge the gap between the Dixieland and the swing eras. He was often known as "Smack" Henderson.
Born in New York City in 1907, he was given piano lessons by his mother and others in the neighborhood. He played trumpet and experimented briefly with C-melody saxophone before settling on alto saxophone. In the 1920s, he performed with June Clark, Billy Paige, and Earl Hines, then toured as a member of the Wilberforce Collegians led by Horace Henderson.He appeared on record for the first time in 1927 as a member of the Paradise Ten led by Charlie Johnson. He returned to the Collegians and became their bandleader through 1929, including a performance at the Savoy Ballroom in New York City.
Algeria Junius "June" Clark was an American jazz trumpeter and cornetist, and boxing manager.
Earl Kenneth Hines, universally known as Earl "Fatha" Hines, was an American jazz pianist and bandleader. He was one of the most influential figures in the development of jazz piano and, according to one major source, is "one of a small number of pianists whose playing shaped the history of jazz".
Horace W. Henderson, the younger brother of Fletcher Henderson, was an American jazz pianist, organist, arranger, and bandleader.
In his early 20s, Carter worked as arranger for Fletcher Henderson after that position was vacated by Don Redman. He had no formal education in arranging, so he learned by trial and error, getting on his knees and looking at the existing charts, "writing the lead trumpet first and the lead saxophone first—which, of course, is the hard way. It was quite some time that I did that before I knew what a score was."
Donald Matthew Redman was an American jazz musician, arranger, bandleader, and composer.
He left Henderson to take Redman's former job as leader of McKinney's Cotton Pickers in Detroit. In 1932 he formed a band in New York City that included Chu Berry, Sid Catlett, Cozy Cole, Bill Coleman, Ben Webster, Dicky Wells, and Teddy Wilson.Carter's arrangements were complex. Among the most significant were "Keep a Song in Your Soul", written for Henderson in 1930, and "Lonesome Nights" and "Symphony in Riffs" from 1933, both of which show Carter's writing for saxophones.
McKinney's Cotton Pickers were an African American jazz band, in Detroit, Michigan in 1926 led by William McKinney, who expanded his Synco Septet to ten pieces. Cuba Austin took over for McKinney on drums. Between 1927 and 1931, they were one of the most popular African-American bands. Many of their records for Victor were bestsellers.
Leon Brown "Chu" Berry was an American jazz tenor saxophonist during the 1930s.
Sidney "Big Sid" Catlett was an American jazz drummer. Catlett was one of the most versatile drummers of his era, adapting with the changing music scene as it progressed toward bebop.
By the early 1930s, Carter and Johnny Hodges were considered the leading alto saxophonists. Carter also became a leading trumpet soloist, having rediscovered the instrument. He recorded extensively on trumpet in the 1930s. Carter's short-lived Orchestra played the Harlem Club in New York but only recorded a handful of records for Columbia, OKeh and Vocalion. The OKeh sides were issued under the name The Chocolate Dandies.
Columbia Records is an American record label owned by Sony Music Entertainment, a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, the North American division of Japanese conglomerate Sony. It was founded in 1887, evolving from the American Graphophone Company, the successor to the Volta Graphophone Company. Columbia is the oldest surviving brand name in the recorded sound business, and the second major company to produce records. From 1961 to 1990, Columbia recordings were released outside North America under the name CBS Records to avoid confusion with EMI's Columbia Graphophone Company. Columbia is one of Sony Music's four flagship record labels, alongside former longtime rival RCA Records, as well as Arista Records and Epic Records.
For Decca's Vocalion label, see Disques Vogue
The Chocolate Dandies was a name used by a number of different jazz ensembles in the United States from the 1920s into the 1940s.
In 1933 Carter participated in sessions with British band leader Spike Hughes, who went to New York City to organize recordings with prominent African American musicians. These 14 sides plus four by Carter's big band, titled at the time Spike Hughes and His Negro Orchestra, were initially only issued in England. The musicians were from Carter's band and included Red Allen, Dicky Wells, Wayman Carver, Coleman Hawkins, J. C. Higginbotham, and Chu Berry.
Patrick Cairns "Spike" Hughes was a British jazz musician, composer and music journalist. He was the son of Irish composer, writer and song collector Herbert Hughes and great grandson of the sculptor Samuel Peploe Wood. Hughes was a multi-dimensional musician, playing the double bass, composing operatic scores, arranging jazz recordings and writing books on topics ranging from gardening to Toscanini's music.
Henry James "Red" Allen was an American jazz trumpeter and vocalist whose style has been claimed to be the first to fully incorporate the innovations of Louis Armstrong.
Wayman Carver was an American jazz flutist and reeds player.
Carter moved to London and spent two years as arranger for the BBC Big Band.In England, France, and Scandinavia he recorded with local musicians, and he took his band to the Netherlands. In these settings Carter played trumpet, clarinet, piano, alto and tenor saxophone, and provided occasional vocals. In 1938 he returned to America. He found regular work leading his band at the Savoy Ballroom in Harlem through 1941. The band included Shad Collins, Sidney De Paris, Vic Dickenson, and Freddie Webster. After this engagement he led a seven-piece band which included Eddie Barefield, Kenny Clarke, and Dizzy Gillespie.
In the middle 1940s, he made Los Angeles his home, forming another big band, which at times included J. J. Johnson, Max Roach, and Miles Davis. But these would be his last big bands. With the exception of occasional concerts, performing with Jazz at the Philharmonic,and recording, he ceased working as a touring big band bandleader. Los Angeles provided him many opportunities for studio work, and these dominated his time during the decades. He wrote music and arrangements for television and films, such as Stormy Weather in 1943. During the 1950s and '60s, he wrote arrangements for vocalists such as Louis Armstrong, Ray Charles, Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee, and Sarah Vaughan. On something of a comeback in the 1970s, Carter returned to playing saxophone again and toured the Middle East courtesy of the U.S. State Department. He began making annual visits to Europe and Japan.
In 1969, Carter was persuaded to spend a weekend at Princeton University by Morroe Berger, a sociology professor at Princeton who wrote about jazz. This led to a new outlet for Carter's talent: teaching. For the next nine years he visited Princeton five times, most of them brief stays except for one in 1973 when he spent a semester there as a visiting professor. In 1974 Princeton gave him an honorary doctorate.He conducted teaching at workshops and seminars at several other universities and was a visiting lecturer at Harvard for a week in 1987. Morroe Berger wrote Benny Carter – A Life in American Music (1982), a two-volume work about Carter's career.
Time had little effect on Carter's abilities. During the 1980s he wrote the long composition Central City Sketches which was performed at Cooper Union by the American Jazz Orchestra. Another long composition, Glasgow Suite, was performed in Scotland. Lincoln Center commission him to write "Good Vibes" in 1990. The National Endowment for the Arts gave him a grant that led Tales of the Rising Sun Suite and Harlem Renaissance Suite. This music was performed in 1992 when he was 85 years old.
Carter had an unusually long career. He was perhaps the only musician to have recorded in eight different decades.Another characteristic of his career was its versatility as musician, bandleader, arranger, and composer. He helped define the sound of alto saxophone, but he also performed and recorded on soprano saxophone, tenor saxophone, trumpet, trombone, clarinet, and piano. He helped establish a foundation for arranging as far back as 1930 when he arranged "Keep a Song in Your Soul" for Fletcher Henderson's big band. His compositions include the novelty hit "Cow-Cow Boogie" recorded by Ella Mae Morse, and the expansive Central City Sketches, written when he was 80 years old and recorded with the American Jazz Orchestra.
Carter died at the age of 95 in Los Angeles at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center on July 12, 2003 from complications of bronchitis.
On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Benny Carter among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire.
He was inducted into the Down Beat Jazz Hall of Fame in 1977. In 1978, he was inducted into the Black Filmmakers Hall of Fame.In 1980 he received the Golden Score award of the American Society of Music Arrangers and Composers. His 75th birthday was commemorated by a radio station in New York that played his music nonstop for over a week. The National Endowment for the Arts gave him the NEA Jazz Masters Award for 1986.
He was given a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 1987. In 1994 he won a Grammy Award for his solo on "Prelude to a Kiss" and received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
In 1989 Lincoln Center celebrated Carter's 82nd birthday with a set of his songs sung by Ernestine Anderson and Sylvia Syms. In 1990, he was named Jazz Artist of the Year in the Down Beat and JazzTimes polls. He was a Kennedy Center Honoree in 1996 and received honorary doctorates from Princeton (1974),Rutgers (1991), Harvard (1994), and the New England Conservatory of Music (1998). In 2016 the National Museum of American History made Carter the subject of its Jazz Appreciation Month poster.
In 2000, he was given the National Medal of Arts by President Bill Clinton.
|1963||Best Background Arrangement (Behind vocalist or instrumentalist)||"Busted"||Nomination|
|1986||Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Group||Swing Reunion||Nomination|
|1987||Lifetime Achievement Award||Win|
|1988||Best Instrumental Composition||"Central City Sketches (Side 2)"||Nomination|
|1992||Best Large Jazz Ensemble Performance||Harlem Renaissance||Nomination|
|1992||Best Instrumental Composition||"Harlem Renaissance Suite"||Win|
|1993||Best Jazz Instrumental Solo||"The More I See You"||Nomination|
|1994||Best Instrumental Composition||"Elegy in Blue"||Nomination|
|1994||Best Jazz Instrumental Performance, Individual Or Group||Elegy in Blue||Nomination|
|1994||Best Jazz Instrumental Solo||"Prelude to a Kiss"||Win|
Information from AllMusic.com
|1952||Alone Together||with the Oscar Peterson Quintet||Norgran|
|1954||Benny Carter Plays Pretty||also released as Moonglow||Norgran|
|1954||The Formidable Benny Carter||Norgran|
|1954||The Urbane Mr. Carter||Norgran|
|1955||New Jazz Sounds||with Dizzy Gillespie and Bill Harris||Norgran|
|1957||Urbane Jazz||with Roy Eldridge||Verve|
|1958||Swingin' the '20s||with Earl Hines||Contemporary|
|1958||The Fabulous Benny Carter Band||Reissue of 1943 recordings||Audio Lab|
|1959||Aspects||also released as The Benny Carter Jazz Calendar||United Artists|
|1960||Sax ala Carter!||United Artists|
|1962||BBB & Co.||with Ben Webster & Barney Bigard||Swingville|
|1963||Benny Carter in Paris||20th Century Fox|
|1966||Additions to Further Definitions||CD re-released as bonus tracks on Further Definitions||Impulse!|
|1976||Carter, Gillespie Inc.||with Dizzy Gillespie||Pablo|
|1976||Wonderland||Released in 1986||Pablo|
|1977||'Live and Well in Japan!||Pablo Live|
|1977||Benny Carter 4: Montreux '77||Pablo Live|
|1985||A Gentleman and His Music||Concord|
|1987||Billy Eckstine Sings with Benny Carter||with Billy Eckstine||EmArcy|
|1987||Benny Carter Meets Oscar Peterson||with Oscar Peterson||Pablo|
|1987||Central City Sketches||with the American Jazz Orchestra||MusicMasters|
|1988||In the Mood for Swing||MusicMasters|
|1989||My Kind of Trouble||Pablo|
|1989||Over the Rainbow||MusicMasters|
|1990||Cookin' at Carlos I||MusicMasters|
|1990||Marian McPartland Plays the Benny Carter Songbook||Concord Jazz|
|1990||My Man Benny, My Man Phil||with Phil Woods||MusicMasters|
|1991||All That Jazz: Live at Princeton||MusicMasters|
|1992||Legends||with Hank Jones - released 1997||MusicMasters|
|1994||Elegy in Blue||MusicMasters|
|1996||Benny Carter Songbook||with various vocalists||MusicMasters|
|1996||Another Time, Another Place||with Phil Woods||Evening Star|
|1997||Benny Carter Songbook Volume II||with various vocalists||MusicMasters|
|1997||New York Nights||MusicMasters|
|1960||Kansas City Suite||Count Basie and His Orchestra||Jazz||Roulette|
|1961||The Legend||Count Basie and His Orchestra||Jazz||Roulette|
|1962||Big Band Jazz from the Summit||Louis Bellson||Jazz||Roulette|
|1963||The Explosive Side of Sarah Vaughan||Sarah Vaughan||Jazz||Roulette|
|1963||The Lonely Hours||Sarah Vaughan||Jazz||Roulette|
|1963||Mink Jazz||Peggy Lee||Jazz||Capitol|
|1964||Keely Smith Sings the John Lennon—Paul McCartney Songbook||Keely Smith||Jazz||Reprise|
|1967||Portrait of Carmen||Carmen McRae||Jazz||Atlantic|
|1968||Manufacturers of Soul||Jackie Wilson and Count Basie||Soul jazz||Brunswick|
|1968||30 by Ella||Ella Fitzgerald||Jazz||Capitol|
|1979||A Classy Pair||Ella Fitzgerald with the Count Basie Orchestra||Jazz||Pablo|
With Louis Bellson
With Dizzy Gillespie
With Jazz at the Philharmonic
With Peggy Lee
With Dave Pell
With Nancy Wilson
A big band is a type of musical ensemble that usually consists of ten or more musicians with four sections: saxophones, trumpets, trombones, and a rhythm section. Big bands originated during the early 1910s and dominated jazz in the early 1940s when swing was most popular. The term "big band" is also used to describe a genre of music. One problem with this usage is that it overlooks the variety of music played by these bands.
The swing era was the period of time (1933–1947) when big band swing music was the most popular music in the United States. Though this was its most popular period, the music had actually been around since the late 1920s and early 1930s, being played by black bands led by such artists as Duke Ellington, Jimmie Lunceford, Bennie Moten, Cab Calloway, Earl Hines, and Fletcher Henderson, and white bands from the 1920s led by the likes of Jean Goldkette, Russ Morgan and Isham Jones. An early milestone in the era was from “the King of Swing” Benny Goodman's performance at the Palomar Ballroom in Los Angeles on August 21, 1935, bringing the music to the rest of the country. The 1930s also became the era of other great soloists: the tenor saxists Coleman Hawkins, Chu Berry and Lester Young; the alto saxists Benny Carter and Johnny Hodges; the drummers Chick Webb, Gene Krupa, Cozy Cole and Sid Catlett; the pianists Fats Waller and Teddy Wilson; the trumpeters Roy Eldridge, Bunny Berigan, and Rex Stewart.
Russell Procope, was an American clarinetist and alto saxophonist who was a member of the Duke Ellington orchestra.
The Institute of Jazz Studies (IJS) is the largest and most comprehensive library and archives of jazz and jazz-related materials in the world. It is located on the fourth floor of the John Cotton Dana Library at Rutgers University-Newark in Newark, New Jersey. The archival collection contains more than 100,000 sound recordings on CDs, LPs, EPs, 78- and 75-rpm disks, and 6,000 books. It also houses over 30 instruments used by famous jazz musicians.
"Sing, Sing, Sing " is a 1936 song, with music and lyrics by Louis Prima, who first recorded it with the New Orleans Gang. Brunswick Records released it on February 28, 1936 on the 78 rpm record format, with "It's Been So Long" as the B-side. The song is strongly identified with the big band and swing eras. Several have performed the piece as an instrumental, including Fletcher Henderson and, most famously, Benny Goodman.
Gerald Stanley Wilson was an American jazz trumpeter, big band bandleader, composer/arranger, and educator. Born in Mississippi, he was based in Los Angeles from the early 1940s. In addition to being a band leader, Wilson wrote arrangements for Duke Ellington, Sarah Vaughan, Ray Charles, Julie London, Dizzy Gillespie, Ella Fitzgerald, Benny Carter, Lionel Hampton, Billie Holiday, Dinah Washington, and Nancy Wilson.
Benny Morton, born in New York City, was a jazz trombonist most associated with the swing genre. He was praised by fellow trombonist Bill Watrous among others. One of his first jobs was working with Clarence Holiday, and he appeared with Clarence's daughter Billie Holiday towards the end of her life on The Sound of Jazz. Morton was a member of pianist Teddy Wilson's Sextet throughout the early 1940s. In the 1960s he was part of the Jazz Giants band: "Wild" Bill Davison (cornet), Herb Hall, Claude Hopkins (piano), Arvell Shaw (bass) and Buzzy Drootin (drums). They toured the U.S. and frequently in Canada where they did some recording for Sackville Records. Towards the end of the 60's he played with an offshoot of the Jazz Giants under the leadership of Buzzy Drootin, called Buzzy's Jazz Family, including Herb Hall, with Herman Autrey replacing Davison, Buzzy's nephew Sonny Drootin replacing Hopkins, and Eddie Gibbs replacing Shaw. That stated he is probably best known for his work with Count Basie and Fletcher Henderson.
Soul on Top is the 28th studio album by American musician James Brown. The album was released in April 1970, by King. Brown and saxophonist Maceo Parker worked with arranger/conductor Oliver Nelson to record a big band, funk and jazz vocal album. It was recorded with Louie Bellson and his 18-piece jazz orchestra at United Western Recorders in Hollywood, California in November 1969, and features jazz standards, show tunes, and middle of the road hits, as well as a new arrangement of Brown's funk hit "Papa's Got a Brand New Bag".
Orchestral jazz is a jazz genre that developed in New York City in the 1920s. Early innovators of the genre, such as Fletcher Henderson and Duke Ellington, include some of the most highly regarded musicians, composers, and arrangers in all of jazz history. The fusion of jazz's rhythmic and instrumental characteristics with the scale and structure of an orchestra, made orchestral jazz distinct from the musical genres that preceded its emergence. Its development contributed both to the popularization of jazz, as well as the critical legitimization of jazz as an art form.
Walt Levinsky was an American big band and orchestral player, composer, arranger and bandleader. While many of his big band assignments were as lead alto sax player, his favorite instrument was the clarinet.
This is a timeline documenting events of Jazz in the year 1939.
A Study in Frustration: The Fletcher Henderson Story is a box set compilation surveying studio recordings of the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra from 1923 to 1938, released in 1961 on Columbia Records, CXK 85470. It initially appeared as a four-album set produced by Frank Driggs and assembled by John Hammond, both of whom also wrote the liner notes. The set was part of a Thesaurus of Classic Jazz series on Columbia which included King of the Delta Blues Singers also worked on by Hammond and Driggs and released in 1961, the first album reissue of songs by blues legend Robert Johnson.
New York, New Sound is an album by the Gerald Wilson Orchestra recorded in 2003 and released on the Mack Avenue label.
In My Time is an album by the Gerald Wilson Orchestra recorded in 2005 and released on the Mack Avenue label.
Edward Morris Berger was an American librarian, discographer, author, editor, historian, photographer, educator, jazz producer, and record label owner. For more than forty years, Berger was affiliated with the Institute of Jazz Studies at Rutgers University. He was also a longtime friend and business associate of the jazz instrumentalist and composer Benny Carter.
The Sound of Nancy Wilson is a 1968 studio album by Nancy Wilson, originally subtitled, "...An Experience in Motion and Emotion." It features a mixture of vocal jazz, soul, and popular music, and several prominent jazz instrumentalists perform on the album, including Benny Carter, Harry "Sweets" Edison, Shelly Manne, and pianist Jimmy Jones, who also serves as arranger and conductor. The song "Peace of Mind" was released as a single in October 1968.
Nancy is a studio album by Nancy Wilson, released on Capitol Records in January 1969. It was produced by David Cavanaugh, with arrangements and conducting by Jimmy Jones. Musicians on the album include famed jazz saxophonist Benny Carter, who also serves as arranger for one song.
Harlem Renaissance is a live album celebrating saxophonist/composer Benny Carter's 85th birthday recorded in 1992 and released by the MusicMasters label.
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