There is a good chance that jazz music has been played in Duval nearly as soon as there was jazz music. John Scott highlight's the talented jazz musicians connected to Jacksonville.
Teddy Washington (on right, with Longineu Parsons)- A graduate of Old Stanton High, Teddy Washington was trumpet player, music director and co-arranger for years in the James Brown Band, arguably the most talented ensemble of horn players in R&B history. His career also included playing with B.B. King and Frank Sinatra, while recording his own solo jazz work. Moved back to Jacksonville in the early 80s and became a stalwart in the music community until his passing in 2009.
Jack Sheldon – multi-talented trumpeter, comedian and actor, Sheldon moved from Jacksonville while in his teens to the west coast, becoming one of the pioneers of the west coast jazz scene in the early 50s. He has fronted his own group, as well as playing with Dexter Gordon and others. Sheldon may be more well known for his work in television; as Merv Griffin’s bandleader/sidekick for Griffin’s talk show in the late 60s; and as one of the voices of ABC’s early 70s Saturday morning Schoolhouse Rock, where Sheldon was the singer of “Conjunction Junction” and “I’m Just a Bill”.
Jackie Davis – Davis was one of the the first musicians to popularize jazz on the Hammond organ, with a long, illustrious career, on his own albums and playing with others such as Louis Jordan. He played here locally as a child, paid his way to Florida A&M where he graduated with a degree in music. After a stint in the Army, he worked steadily in the northeast . His light-jazz arrangements of standards were a staple of easy listening stations of the time. Davis got into acting as well, perhaps best known for his role as “Smoke” in Caddyshack.
Sam Jones – Locally born jazz bassist and jazz cello soloist, recorded as bandleader and best known for his work with Cannonball Adderly, Thelonious Monk and Dizzy Gillespie
Article by John Scott, part of Jacksonville's Big Show
on 99.1 WQIK on from 5:30AM - 10AM.