Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b 23 Jan. '25, Oakland CA) Pianist, organist, arranger, bandleader. Turned pro at age 16, played during military service, studied composition at the LA Conservatory after WWII, worked for Peggy Lee '53, then freelance for Howard Rumsey, Shelly Manne, Shorty Rogers, Art Pepper and many others in the '50s, as well as jazz-in-the- studio groups Best From The West (Blue Note), Jam Session, Jazz Studio, Melrose Avenue Conservatory Chamber Orches- tra ('I'm Forever Counting Geigers', 'Skip To My Loot'), Trombones Inc. (WB) etc. His own albums '55--60 were on GNP, Bethlehem, Kapp, Mode, Cadence, WB and RCA. His ten-piece Dektette sounded larger than it was and captured the cool but witty sound of West Coast jazz. Best known for accompanying vocalists on albums: Fran Warren, Helen Humes, Matt Dennis, Ella Fitzgerald, Jesse Belvin, vocal group the Axidentials, many others incl. Mel Tormé '57--60 and Ray Charles (Dedicated To You '60). He retired to studio work (film music '60s incl. Hanna--Barbera's Hey There, It's Yogi Bear) but occasionally conti- nued with vocalists: Mavis Rivers '61, Frank Sinatra '63, Frankie Randall '64--5, Astrud Gilberto '65, Sarah Vaughan (Songs Of The Beatles '80).