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Mainstream And Cool Jazz Musicians
1950s - Present
Oscar Peterson
8/15/1925 - 12/23/2007

Oscar Peterson became a sensation in the jazz show Jazz At The Philharmonic in the early 1950s. His trio recordings and work as an accompanist made him one of the most prolific jazz stars in history.

  • Full biography of Oscar Peterson
  • Barney Kessel
    10/17/1923 - 5/06/2004

    In the mid 1940s Barney Kessel played in the big bands of Artie Shaw, Charlie Barnet et al. but also recorded with Charlie Parker. He appeared on more than 60 albums between the 1950s and 1988.

  • Full Barney Kessel biography
  • Mainstream Jazz Musicians That Swing
    Ahmad Jamal
    Bud Johnson
    J.J. Johnson
    Jonah Jones
    Quincy Jones
    Wynton Kelly
    Barney Kessel
    Gene Krupa
    Harold Land
    John Lewis
    Shelly Manne
    Wynton Marsalis
    Les McCann
    Jimmy McGriff
    Jay McShann
    Jack McVea
    Sergio Mendes
    Modern Jazz Quartet
    Thelonius Monk
    Wes Montgomery
    James Moody
    Gerry Mulligan
    Red Norvo
    Charlie Parker
    Art Pepper
    Joe Pass
    Oscar Peterson
    Flip Phillips
    Bucky Pizzarelli
    King Pleasure
    Bud Powell
    Louis Prima
    Paul Quinichette
    Buddy Rich
    Duke Robillard
    Shorty Rogers
    Sonny Rollins
    Jimmy Rowles
    Al Sears
    Ralph Sharon
    Charlie Shavers
    George Shearing
    Zoot Sims
    Jimmy Smith
    Paul Smith
    Willie Smith
    Sonny Stitt
    Buddy Tate
    Billy Taylor
    Clark Terry
    The Three Sounds
    Cal Tjader
    Bobby Tucker
    Charlie Ventura
    T Bone Walker
    Ben Webster
    Frank Wess
    Claude Williamson
    Kai Winding
    Lester Young
    Cannonball Adderly
    Nat Adderly
    Mose Allison
    Louis Armstrong
    Chet Baker
    Count Basie
    Louis Bellson
    Earl Bostic
    Ruby Braff
    Bob Brookmeyer
    Clifford Brown
    Ray Brown
    Dave Brubeck
    Ray Bryant
    Milt Buckner
    John Bunch
    Kenny Burrell
    Sam Butera
    Benny Carter
    Al Casey
    Ray Charles
    Buck Clayton
    Al Cohn
    John Coltrane
    Eddie Lockjaw Davis
    Miles Davis
    Wild Bill Bavis
    Paul Desmond
    Vic Dickenson
    Bill Doggett
    Sweets Edison
    Roy Eldridge
    Duke Ellington
    Herb Ellis
    Tommy Flanagan
    Jimmy Forrest
    Red Garland
    Erroll Garner
    Stan Getz
    Terry Gibbs
    Dizzy Gillespie
    Dexter Gordon
    Stephane Grappelli
    Al Grey
    Tiny Grimes
    Vince Guaraldi
    Charlie Haden
    Jim Hall
    Chico Hamilton
    Lionel Hampton
    Eddie Harris
    Gene Harris
    Coleman Hawkins
    Woody Herman
    Earl "Fatha" Hines
    Jutta Hipp
    Johnny Hodges
    Billie Holiday
    Richard "Groove" Holmes
    Claude Hopkins
    Shirley Horn
    Dick Hyman
    Milt Jackson
    Illinois Jacquet
    Jazz Radio Audio
    The live feed of our Tuesday jazz music radio show streaming online at 4:00 PM Pacific with a focus on the history of jazz music and jazz music that swings from the 1930s to today.

    Our Jazz Radio Show Info Page
    The sordid history of our jazz music radio show, est. 1985. Lends credence to the theory that FCC radio deregulation survival may be linked to narcissistically twisted disorders.

    History Of Jazz Part 1
    Early hot jazz bands, the hotel dance bands and the history of jazz music leading up to the Big Band era.

    History Of Jazz Part II
    The role of economics, early recording technology, and radio relative to jazz history and the Big Band era.

    The Recording Ban Of 1942
    Scans of a 1942 Down Beat magazine article detailing a dramatic event in jazz history during the Big Band era; the James Petrillo / AFM recording ban.

    Webb Cuts Basie At The Savoy
    Another of the many jazz magazine articles on the site detailing big events in jazz history. This piece recounts the Count Basie vs. Chick Webb big band music Battle Of Swing held at Harlem's Savoy Ballroom in January of 1938.

    Oscar Peterson Biography
    Oscar Peterson performed as accompanist for a who's who of jazz soloists and vocalists. His recordings with several incarnations of the Oscar Peterson Trio are superb to fans of straight ahead mainstream jazz that swings. Mr. Peterson died of kidney failure 12-23-2007.

    Ray Charles Biography
    Known as "The Genius" Ray Charles recorded a wide variety of music but got his start playing big band music and jazz. He passed away 6-10-04.

    Barney Kessel Biography
    The jazz guitar great died May 6th, 2004 and left behind a vast body of recorded jazz work.

    Benny Carter Biography
    Benny Carter was one of the greatest arrangers and jazz musicians the genre has ever known. This extensive biography spans the entire lengthy carreer of the jazz legend.

    Billy May Biography
    The trumpeter, bandleader, composer and arranger died Jan. 22, 2004. May wrote many Swing Era classics for Glenn Miller and Charlie Barnet and later for Sinatra and Nat Cole.

    Count Basie Biography
    Our biography of Count Basie traces the career of "the kid from Red Bank" through Kansas City and into the later stages of his life as a bandleader.

    What Is Mainstream Jazz Music?
    Above are some of the greatest mainstream jazz musicians in the history of jazz music. The jazz critic Stanley Dance is generally credited with coining the phrase mainstream jazz. Dance used the term in reference to some of the jazz musicians of the 1950s who continued to play in the swing style of the Big Band era, only in smaller, downsized groups. Frankly all of the musicians mentioned on this website can fit under a single banner called simply jazz musicians that swing. However for ease of navigation we have found it necessary to categorize these jazz greats. This is a process that few of them would have liked and you will note that a good many crossed between a number of different styles of jazz throughout their careers including Swing, Cool Jazz, West Coast Jazz, Bop, Traditional and even Contemporary Jazz.

    In recent times debates have been commonplace on what constitutes swing music and what should be classified as "real" jazz music. We make no distinctions or further classifications in relation to what the music we play is classified as. This, we feel, is better left to expert debaters. We simply enjoy all jazz that swings and attempt to provide listeners of our jazz radio show historical background information of the recordings and musicians who have performed such music since the history of jazz music began.

    A late 1990s resurgence of interest in jazz dance and swing dancing fueled by a Lindy Hop and Jitterbug swing dance craze somewhat confused the general public's perception of the common link between swing music and jazz music. Our radio show makes no claim to be specifically a swing dance radio show, but rather a jazz radio show that features swinging straight ahead jazz music. However if the music we play doesn't make you want to pat your foot, pop your fingers, or shake a leg... check your pulse. That being said, if you are of the mind that Dizzy Gillespie or Charlie Parker never played jazz music that swings keep listening. A vast world of jazz music awaits you and welcomes you with open arms.

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