Support All About Jazz

All About Jazz needs your help and we have a deal. Pay $20 and we'll hide those six pesky Google ads that appear on every page, plus this box and the slideout box on the right for a full year! You'll also fund website expansion.


I want to help

Mose Allison

Mose Allison was born in the Mississippi Delta on his grandfathers farm near the village of Tippo. At five he discovered he could play the piano by ear and began picking out blues and boogie tunes he heard on the local jukebox. In high school he listened to the music of Louis Armstrong, Fats Waller, Duke Ellington, Louis Jordan, and his prime inspiration, Nat Cole of the King Cole Trio. He played trumpet in the marching and dance bands and started writing his own songs.

After a year at the University of Mississippi, he went to the Army in l946, playing in the Army Band in Colorado Springs and performing with accomplished musicians from around the country in small groups at NCO and Officers clubs. Returning to Ole Miss he joined the dance band as arranger, piano and trumpet player, but shortly left to form his own trio, playing piano and singing in a style heavily influenced by Nat Cole, Louis Jordan and Erroll Garner. After a year on the road, Mose married, returned to college at Louisiana State University and graduated in 1952 with a BA in English and Philosophy.

He worked in nightclubs throughout the Southeast and West, blending the raw blues of his childhood with modern pianistic influences of John Lewis, Thelonius Monk and Al Haig. His vocal style was influenced by blues singers Percy Mayfield and Charles Brown. Arriving in New York in 1956, Mose received encouragement, work and a record date from Al Cohn. In 1957 he secured his own first recording contract with Prestige Records, recording Back Country Suite, a collection of pieces evoking the Mississippi Delta, released to unanimous critical acclaim. Mose went on to play and record with jazz greats Stan Getz, Al Cohn, Zoot Sims and Gerry Mulligan as well as with his own Mose Allison Trio.

Read more
”When I discovered Mose Allison I felt I had discovered the missing link between jazz and blues” —Ray Davies

“The man's voice was heaven. So cool, so decisively hip... Mose was my man. I felt him to be the epitome of restrained screaming power.” —Pete Townshend

“For over thirty years, this premier songwriter, singer and pianist has stared down the oncoming doom, peppering his idiosyncratic blend of jazz and blues with mordant wit and unflinching honesty.” —Village Voice

12 Photos

Albums

American Legend Live in California
American Legend Live...
City Hall Records
2016
buy
American Legend in California
American Legend in...
City Hall Records
2015
buy
[no cover]
The Way Of The World
Blue Note
2010
buy
[no cover]
Back Country Suite +...
Blue Note
2010
buy
[no cover]
The Collection
Blue Note
2010
buy
Mose Allison Sings
Mose Allison Sings
Prestige Records
2006
buy

Videos

Similar

Miles Davis Miles Davis
trumpet
Louis Armstrong Louis Armstrong
trumpet
Ahmad Jamal Ahmad Jamal
piano
Cedar Walton Cedar Walton
piano
Kenny Burrell Kenny Burrell
guitar
Fats Waller Fats Waller
piano
Stan Getz Stan Getz
sax, tenor
Kurt Elling Kurt Elling
vocalist
Bud Powell Bud Powell
piano
Support our sponsor

Sponsor: Motéma Music | BUY IT  

Join the staff. Writers Wanted!

Develop a column, write album reviews, cover live shows, or conduct interviews.