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Frank Wess

Among the initial main jazz flutists, Frank Wess was also a high Lester Young-influenced tenor guy, an expert initial altoist, and an intermittent composer/arranger — certainly a very important man to get around. In early stages he toured with Blanche Calloway, offered in the armed forces, and acquired stints using the Billy Eckstine Orchestra (1946), Eddie Heywood, Lucky Millinder, and R&B superstar Bull Moose Jackson. Which was all only a prelude to Wess’ essential period with Count number Basie’s big music group, from 1953-1964. His flute playing, therefore expertly employed in Neal Hefti’s agreements, provided the Basie Orchestra a brand new new audio, and his cool-toned tenor contrasted well using the even more passionate audio of fellow tenor Frank Foster; Wess also acquired possibilities to play alto using the traditional big music group. Wess eventually freelanced in countless configurations, using Clark Terry’s big music group, the brand new York Jazz Quartet (with Roland Hanna) through the second fifty percent of the 1970s, Dameronia (1981-1985), and Toshiko Akiyoshi’s big music group, and also acquired periodic reunions with Frank Foster. Frank Wess led periods for Commodore (1954), Savoy, Prestige, Moodsville, Pablo (with Foster), Intensifying, Uptown, Concord, and City Crier. He passed away of a coronary attack at age 91 in Manhattan on Oct 30, 2013.

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