Artist picture of Ben Webster

Ben Webster

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All The Things You Are Art Tatum, Ben Webster, Red Callender, Bill Douglass 07:12
When Your Lover Has Gone Ben Webster, Oscar Peterson 03:59
Solitude Ben Webster 04:01
Jive At Six Ben Webster 04:15
Cocktails For Two Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster, Oscar Peterson 02:39
The Touch of Your Lips Oscar Peterson Trio & Ben Webster 06:21
Bye Bye Blackbird Ben Webster, Oscar Peterson 06:45
This Can't Be Love Ben Webster, Oscar Peterson 09:51
Speak Low 2 Billie Holiday, Ben Webster 04:29
Bounce Blues Ben Webster 04:35

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Blues For Yolande
It Never Entered My Mind
You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To

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Sometimes affectionately known as 'The Brute' and 'Frog' due to his tough and raspy style of playing, Ben Webster is recognised as one of the most important tenor sax musicians of all time, along with Coleman Hawkins and Lester Young. Brought up in Kansas City, he originally learned to play piano and violin, before turning to sax after taking lessons from the great Johnny Hodges. He joined the Young Family Band, which then featured Lester Young and went on to play with Benny Moten's band alongside future stars like Count Basie and Walter Page. Others he played with along the way included Andy Kirk, the Fletcher Henderson Orchestra, Benny Carter and Cab Calloway.

In 1935 he joined the Duke Ellington Orchestra, soon establishing himself as one of the top tenor saxophonists in the country, featuring on many famous recordings, including 'Cotton Tail' and 'All Too Soon'. He quit the band after a furious argument with Ellington (when he allegedly cut up one of the band leader's suits), setting up his own band and also playing with Jimmy Witherspoon and Jay McShann. In 1953 he made one of his most acclaimed LPs, 'King of the Tenors', with pianist Oscar Peterson, who became one of his regular collaborators. He also worked regularly with Norman Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic and in 1956 forged another celebrated partnership with pianist Art Tatum. After making his peace with the band leader, Webster rejoined the Duke Ellington Orchestra in 1971 and also recorded influential sets with Earl Hines, Buck Clayton, Bill Coleman and Teddy Wilson. In later years he spent more and more time in Europe, but collapsed and died following a show in Holland in 1973. He left behind many recordings to provide huge inspiration to new generations of jazz musicians.