Dizzy Gillespie’s Birthday

Below you can view an appearance on the Ed Sullvian show.

His full name was John Birks Gillespie.   Gillespie was a trumpeter, showman, bandleader, singer, gifted improviser and composer dubbed “the sound of surprise” who fused jazz with Afro-Cuban music.   Known for his trademark of puffing out his cheeks while playing the trumpet, he was nicknamed “Dizzy” for his amusing antics on stage.

For the most part he was self-taught and was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz.  Dizzy’s beret and horn-rimmed spectacles, his scat singing, his bent horn, pouched cheeks and his light-hearted personality were essential in popularizing bebop.

Dizzy Gillespie’s contributions to jazz were huge, he was one of the greatest jazz trumpeters of all time.   Among his hits are “Groovin’ High,” “A Night in Tunisia,” “Manteca” and “Two Bass Hit.”

He taught and influenced many other musicians, including trumpeters Miles Davis, Fats Navarro, Clifford Brown, Arturo Sandoval, Lee Morgan, Jon Faddis and Chuck Mangione.

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