Chet Baker
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1929-12-23
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Chet Baker Biography (BBC)

When the clean-cut young Baker came out of the army in 1952 and played his first high-profile gigs with Charlie Parker, he had the kind of matinee-idol looks that suggested he would become a star. His clear-toned vibratoless trumpet style owed a lot to Miles Davis, but the introverted phrasing was all his own, as was Baker's surprisingly delicate singing voice.

After coming to national attention with Gerry Mulligan's quartet, and a hit with My Funny Valentine, Baker formed his own group, and for the middle to late 1950s made a series of successful discs that boosted his path to stardom. However, he was by then a serious heroin addict, and his world collapsed in 1960 when he was sentenced to a prison term while on tour in Italy. The 1960s became a decade of decline, and Baker's face became deeply lined and haggard.

Losing his teeth forced him to give up playing for a while, but he fought back in the 1970s and although he never bcame free of the shadow of drugs, he resumed his place among the world's leading jazz trumpeters. His later recordings lack the easy brilliance of his earlier playing, but within his narrow range and soft tone, he found new levels of expressivity. He fell to his death out of a window in Amsterdam, supposedly because of yet another nefarious involvement in the world of narcotics.

Chet Baker Biography (Wikipedia)

Chesney Henry "Chet" Baker, Jr. (December 23, 1929 – May 13, 1988) was an American jazz trumpeter, flugelhornist, and vocalist.

Baker earned much attention and critical praise through the 1950s, particularly for albums featuring his vocals (Chet Baker Sings, It Could Happen to You). Jazz historian Dave Gelly described the promise of Baker's early career as "James Dean, Sinatra, and Bix, rolled into one". His well-publicized drug habit also drove his notoriety and fame; Baker was in and out of jail frequently before enjoying a career resurgence in the late 1970s and '80s.

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Chet Baker Performances & Interviews


Chet Baker Tracks

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Chet Baker
That Old Feeling
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That Old Feeling
Chet Baker
My Funny Valentine
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My Funny Valentine
Chet Baker
I Get Along Without You Very Well (Except Sometimes)
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I Get Along Without You Very Well (Except Sometimes)
Chet Baker
I Get Along Without You Very Well
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I Get Along Without You Very Well
Gerry Mulligan Quartet
My Funny Valentine (feat. Chet Baker)
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My Funny Valentine (feat. Chet Baker)
Chet Baker
The More I See You
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The More I See You
Chet Baker
The Thrill Is Gone
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The Thrill Is Gone
Chet Baker
Zing Went the Strings Of My Heart
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Zing Went the Strings Of My Heart
Chet Baker
Look For The Silver Lining
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Look For The Silver Lining
Chet Baker
Little Duet (For Zoot and Chet)
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Little Duet (For Zoot and Chet)
Chet Baker
Time After Time
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Time After Time
Chet Baker
With A Song In My Heart
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With A Song In My Heart
Chet Baker
Everything Depends on You
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Everything Depends on You
Chet Baker
Moonlight Becomes You
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Moonlight Becomes You
Chet Baker
Someone to watch over me
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Someone to watch over me
Gerry Mulligan Quartet
Makin' Whoopee
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Makin' Whoopee
Gerry Mulligan Quartet
Bernie's Tune
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Bernie's Tune
Charlie Parker
Irresistable You
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Irresistable You
Gerry Mulligan Quartet
Cherry
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Cherry
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