|Birth name||Curtis DuBois Fuller|
|Born||December 15, 1932|
Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
|Died||May 8, 2021 86)(aged|
|Occupation(s)||Musician, composer, educator|
|Labels||Blue Note, Prestige, Savory, Impulse!, Epic, Atlantic|
Curtis DuBois Fuller(December 15, 1932 –May 8, 2021) was an American jazz trombonist. He was a member of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and contributed to many classic jazz recordings.
Fuller was born in Detroit on December 15, 1932. His father had emigrated from Jamaica and worked in a Ford automobile factory, but he died from tuberculosis before his son was born. His mother, who had moved north from Atlanta, died when he was 9. He spent several years in an orphanage run by Jesuits.He developed a passion for jazz after one of the nuns there brought him to see Illinois Jacquet and his band perform, with J. J. Johnson on trombone.
Fuller attended a public school in his hometown, together with Paul Chambers, Donald Byrd, Tommy Flanagan, Thad Jones, and Milt Jackson.There, he took up the trombone when he was sixteen, after attempting the violin and with the saxophone (his next choice) being unavailable. He studied under Johnson and Elmer James.
Fuller joined the US Army in 1953 to fight in the Korean War. He served until 1955, and played in a band with Chambers and brothers Cannonball and Nat Adderley. Upon his return from military service, Fuller joined the quintet of Yusef Lateef, another Detroit musician. The quintet moved to New York in 1957, and Fuller recorded his first sessions as a leader with Prestige.
Alfred Lion of Blue Note Records first heard Fuller playing with Miles Davis in the late 1950s, and the trombonist led four dates for Blue Note,though one of these, an album with Slide Hampton, was not issued for many years. Lion featured him as a sideman on record dates led by Sonny Clark ( Dial "S" for Sonny , Sonny's Crib ) and John Coltrane ( Blue Train ). Other sideman appearances over the next decade included work on albums under the leadership of Bud Powell, Jimmy Smith, Wayne Shorter, Lee Morgan and Joe Henderson (a former roommate at Wayne State University in 1956).
Fuller was also the first trombonist to be a member of the Art Farmer-Benny Golson Jazztet, later becoming the sixth man in Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers in 1961, staying with Blakey until 1965.In the early 1960s, Fuller recorded two albums as a leader for Impulse! Records, having also recorded for Savoy Records, United Artists, and Epic after his obligations to Blue Note had ended. In the late 1960s, he was part of Dizzy Gillespie's band that also featured Foster Elliott. Fuller went on to tour with Count Basie and also reunited with Blakey and Golson.
Fuller married Catherine Rose Driscoll in 1980. She died of lung cancer in 2010; Fuller recorded his album The Story of Cathy & Me (2011) as a tribute.
Fuller was granted an honorary doctorate of music from Berklee College of Music in 1999.Eight years later, he was honored as an NEA Jazz Master. He continued to perform and record, and was a faculty member of the New York State Summer School of the Arts (NYSSSA) School of Jazz Studies (SJS). On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Fuller among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal fire.
Fuller died on May 8, 2021, at the age of 88. Throughout his life, Fuller was reported to have been born in 1934; he had added two years to his age at 17 in part to gain work.
With Count Basie
With Dave Bailey
With Art Blakey
With John Coltrane
With Buddy DeFranco
With Kenny Dorham
With Art Farmer
With Joe Farnsworth
With Benny Golson
With Lionel Hampton
With Jimmy Heath
With Quincy Jones
With Yusef Lateef
With Hank Mobley
With Woody Shaw
With Jimmy Smith
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"Yes sir, I'm gonna to stay with the youngsters. When these get too old, I'm gonna get some younger ones. Keeps the mind active."
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A discography of the multi-instrumentalist Yusef Lateef (1920–2013).
Originally released as V.A.- "Jazz Committee for Latin American Affairs"(Fred Miles FM 403)
Originally released in 1959 as Machito And His Afro-Cuban Jazz Ensemble's album "With Flute To Boot"(Roulette – SR-52026,US)