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Benny Powell

Born in New Orleans, Powell is, perhaps, best known for his 12-year tenure (1951-63) with Count Basie, and for his eight-bar contribution to the Count's all-time big hit, “April in Paris.” But more than that, Powell, in his all-too-rare solos with the Basie band, displayed a blues-laced, story-telling approach to improvisation. Check out, for instance, his masterfully balanced two-chorus statement on “Blues Backstage” from 1954, or “In a Mellotone,” recorded in a live performance five years later.

After leaving Basie, Powell embarked upon a rich, diverse musical career. A versatile and accomplished player, he has worked extensively on Broadway, television, and on numerous recordings.

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CD/LP/Track Review
CD/LP/Track Review
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I am distressed when I hear about the passing of a musician, but this news was particularly poignant because Benny Powell was one of our treasured members. Benny Powell will be missed as much for his humanity as for his musicality.

--Makin' Music NY

Last year, jazz writer Andrew Velez & Benny gave us permission to reprint a great article entitled, “Benny Powell: Trombone Titan.”

Additionally, here are links to a few articles written about Benny by jazz writer Bob Bernotas:

“Benny Powell's playing has always had a flowing coherence” --Nat Hentoff

“Be assured [NEXTEP] is no trip down nostalgia lane

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