Count Basie – Biography
William James “Count” Basie was born in 1904 in Red Bank, New Jersey. He had always wanted to play the drums from an early age, but was discouraged that talented musicians like Sonny Greer already existed. So, he instead took up piano. During his time in Harlem in the 1920s, Basie met many of the famous jazz artists of the day, including Louis Armstrong, James P. Johnson and Fats Waller.
In the 1930s, Basie moved to Kansas City and developed his own stomping style of big band music. Basie’s Kansas City swing was much bluesier and more improvised than his contemporaries. For the next two decades, he bridged the gap between big band and bebop, and his career underwent a renaissance in the 1950s with the releases of several classic LPs. Keep reading below for Count Basie album reviews and accolades.
- Count Basie Swings, Joe Williams Sings (1955, with Joe Williams) A-
- April in Paris (1957) A
- The Atomic Mr. Basie (1958) A
- Kansas City Suite (1960) A-
- Colin’s Review Music Hall of Fame
- 1930s Best Songs – #44