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Jimmy Heath

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Don't Misunderstand Jimmy Heath, Gregory Porter 05:32
Inside Your Heart Jimmy Heath 04:50
One Hour Non-Stop Smooth Jazz Mix Billie Holiday, Miles Davis, Louis Armstrong, John Coltrane 61:20
Left Alone Jimmy Heath, Cecile McLorin Salvant 04:26
Ballad From Upper Neighbors Suite Jimmy Heath 04:16
Con Alma Jimmy Heath 05:12
Fashion Or Passion Jimmy Heath 05:37
La Mesha Jimmy Heath, Wynton Marsalis 07:12
Don’t Explain Jimmy Heath 07:11
Sleeves Jimmy Heath, Tony Purrone, Ben Brown, Albert Tootie Heath 09:24

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Jimmy Heath, known as Little Bird, was an American jazz saxophonist, arranger, big band leader and composer.

Heath was born on October 25th, 1926, into a musical family in Philadelphia. His father played the clarinet, performing at the weekend, his mother sang in the local church choir, his sister was a pianist and his brothers were drummer Albert Heath and bassist Percy Heath.

Heath started out as an alto player, performing with Howard McGhee from 1947-48 and then the Dizzy Gillespie big band from 1949-50. He was given the nickname 'Little Bird' for the similarity in his playing to Charlie Parker (known just as 'Bird') and switched to the tenor sax in the early '50s. Heath dropped out of sight for a few years in the mid-50s, though he did write for Art Blakey and Chet Baker through the middle of the decade.

Making a return to performing in 1959 Heath briefly played with Miles Davis, as well as Gil Evans and Kenny Dorham, and began a series of recordings for Riverside. The 1960s saw him often playing with Milt Jackson and Art Farmer and in the '70s he joined his brothers in The Heath Brothers. In the 1980s he began teaching alongside his playing, joining the faculty of the Aaron Copland School of Music at Queens College, City University of New York, as a professor.

Heath remained active well into the 2010s, but died in 2020 at the age of 93.