All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Sir Roland Hanna

Sir Roland Hanna

Sir Roland Hanna was one of the major figures in jazz. His diverse experience as a musician (pianist and cellist), composer, arranger, teacher, diplomat, and humanitarian made him a dynamic driving force in the development of the art form.

Born in Detroit in 1932, Hanna's first musical influence was the gospel and rythm and blues heard in his preacher father's church. This was coupled with formal training in classical piano from an early age. His musical evolution continued beyond graduation from Cass Technical High School and through a two year assignment in the United States Army Band. After the army, he studied at the Eastman School and then Julliard. In 1958 he played with the Benny Goodman Orchestra, appearing at the Newport Jazz Festival and on a European tour ending at the Brussels World's Fair. In 1959, he played with Charles Mingus at the Half Note.

During the sixties, he traveled the world appearing with major orchestras, leading his own group, or performing as a soloist. In 1969, he embarked on a benefit tour in Africa for music students. In recognition of his humanitarian efforts for education in Africa, he was knighted by Liberian President William Tubman in 1970.

His amazingly varied career includes serving as Sarah Vaugh's musical director, anchoring the Rosengarden Orchestra on the Dick Cavett show, touring with a classical quartet performing his cello compostitions, forming the New York Jazz Quartet, while writing over 400 compositions and recording over 40 albums.

Photos (1)

Discography

Colors From A Giant's Kit

Colors From A Giant's...

IPO Recordings
2011

buy
Tributaries: Reflections On Tommy Flanagan

Tributaries:...

IPO Recordings
2004

buy
I've Got a Right to Sing the Blues: The Songs of Harold Arlen

I've Got a Right to...

IPO Recordings
2003

buy
Everything I Love

Everything I Love

IPO Recordings
2003

buy

Similar

Shop for Music

Start your music shopping from All About Jazz and you'll support us in the process. Learn how.