Count Basie
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1904-08-21
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Count Basie Count Basie Count Basie Count Basie

Biography

William James "Count" Basie (August 21, 1904 – April 26, 1984) was an American jazz pianist, organist, bandleader, and composer. His mother taught him to play the piano and he started performing in his teens. Dropping out of school, he learned ...

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Biography

William James "Count" Basie (August 21, 1904 – April 26, 1984) was an American jazz pianist, organist, bandleader, and composer. His mother taught him to play the piano and he started performing in his teens. Dropping out of school, he learned to operate lights for vaudeville and to improvise accompaniment for silent films at a local movie theater in his home town of Red Bank, New Jersey. By 16 he increasingly played jazz piano at parties, resorts and other venues. In 1924 he went to Harlem, where his performing career expanded; he toured with groups to the major jazz cities of Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City. In 1929 he joined Bennie Moten's band in Kansas City, and played with them until Moten's death in 1935.

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Count Basie
The Kid From Red Bank
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The Kid From Red Bank The Kid From Red Bank The Kid From Red Bank The Kid From Red Bank
Count Basie
Makin' Whoopee
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Makin' Whoopee Makin' Whoopee Makin' Whoopee Makin' Whoopee
Tony Bennett & Count Basie
Sing You Sinners (BBC Archive)
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Sing You Sinners (BBC Archive) Sing You Sinners (BBC Archive) Sing You Sinners (BBC Archive) Sing You Sinners (BBC Archive)
Count Basie
Blues In Hoss' Flat
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Blues In Hoss' Flat Blues In Hoss' Flat Blues In Hoss' Flat Blues In Hoss' Flat
Count Basie
Sleepwalker's Serenade
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Sleepwalker's Serenade Sleepwalker's Serenade Sleepwalker's Serenade Sleepwalker's Serenade
Count Basie
Pony Tail
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Pony Tail Pony Tail Pony Tail Pony Tail
Tony Bennett
With Plenty Of Money And You
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With Plenty Of Money And You With Plenty Of Money And You With Plenty Of Money And You With Plenty Of Money And You
Count Basie
Half Moon Street
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Half Moon Street Half Moon Street Half Moon Street Half Moon Street
Tony Bennett
I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans
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I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans I Guess I'll Have To Change My Plans
Count Pearson Proms Band
One O'Clock Jump
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One O'Clock Jump One O'Clock Jump One O'Clock Jump One O'Clock Jump
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Biography

William James "Count" Basie (August 21, 1904 – April 26, 1984) was an American jazz pianist, organist, bandleader, and composer. His mother taught him to play the piano and he started performing in his teens. Dropping out of school, he learned to operate lights for vaudeville and to improvise accompaniment for silent films at a local movie theater in his home town of Red Bank, New Jersey. By 16 he increasingly played jazz piano at parties, resorts and other venues. In 1924 he went to Harlem, where his performing career expanded; he toured with groups to the major jazz cities of Chicago, St. Louis and Kansas City. In 1929 he joined Bennie Moten's band in Kansas City, and played with them until Moten's death in 1935.

That year Basie formed his own jazz orchestra, and in 1936 took them to Chicago for a long engagement and their first recording. He led the group for almost 50 years, creating innovations like the use of two "split" tenor saxophones, emphasizing the rhythm section, riffing with a big band, using arrangers to broaden their sound, and others. Many musicians came to prominence under his direction, including the tenor saxophonists Lester Young and Herschel Evans, the guitarist Freddie Green, trumpeters Buck Clayton and Harry "Sweets" Edison and singers Jimmy Rushing and Joe Williams. Basie's theme songs were "One O'Clock Jump", developed in 1935 in the early days of his band, and later "April in Paris".

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