Born in Kansas City, on July 24, 1934, Alaadeen grew up around music. “I listened to all types of styles. I went to Philharmonic concerts, loved Lester Young, liked T-Bone Walker and was crazy about Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. He began on the saxophone when he was in sixth grade, in time also mastering flute, clarinet and oboe. He studied at R.T. Coles High School under the tutelage of Leo H. Davis, a well respected music instructor reported to have taught Charlie Parker. “The way he taught improvisation was to sing the melody in my ear when I soloed so I’d always keep the melody in mind.” Alaadeen debuted as a professional with Davis’ concert band playing e-flat horn when he was 14 and his first major job was playing baritone sax with the great pianist-bandleader Jay McShann. In later years he would rejoin McShann on tenor.
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One of those Midwest gems who stardom eludes because
Nancy Ann Lee, JazzTimes
Kansas City’s pure treasure…Reedman personified...one
of the most prolific disciples of John Coltrane. A beautiful
cat, spiritual and a deep thinker who’s musical talent has
great healing potential as well as most entertaining.
Butch Berman, Berman Music Foundation
“Mr. Speaker, please join me in recognizing the man who
has revitalized our music community and introduced a new
generation to the sweet sounds of Kansas City Jazz. The
great state of Missouri understands the importance of his
humanitarian efforts and distinguishes his effort by
presenting him with the Governor’s 2000 Community
… Excerpt form Congressional Record: October 13, 2000,