Reference Entry

Dorsey, Jimmy (jazz)

James Lincoln Collier

in Oxford Music Online

Published in print January 2002 |
Published online January 2003 | e-ISBN: 9781561592630 | DOI:

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[James Francis ]

(b Shenandoah, PA, Feb 29, 1904; d New York, June 12, 1957). American clarinetist, saxophonist, and dance-band leader, brother of Tommy Dorsey. He began playing slide trumpet (soprano trombone) from about the age of six, then received extensive lessons on cornet and clarinet from his father, a music teacher and brass band leader; he first took up alto saxophone when he was about 12. With his brother Tommy he led Dorsey’s Wild Canaries in Baltimore (summer ?1922), then from around 1923 performed with the Scranton Sirens. In summer 1924 he joined the California Ramblers, a very popular dance band at the California Ramblers Inn on Pelham Bay, New York. From 1925 to 1934 he worked as a freelance with leading New York bands such as those of Jean Goldkette (1925–6), Paul Whiteman (1926–7), and Vincent Lopez. He toured Europe with Ted Lewis in ...

Reference Entry.  934 words. 

Subjects: Jazz

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