Facebook R&B crooner Mario has been relatively quiet on the music front for…
- Posted on Feb 17th 2009 11:00AM by Dan Reilly
Born in 1924, Bellson learned to play drums as a child after first hearing the instrument at a parade. Taught by his father, he pioneered the use of a second bass drum in his kit and won the Slingerland National Gene Krupa drumming contest at the age of 17.
As a professional, Bellson wrote over 1,000 songs and arrangements, wrote over a dozen books and played on albums with the aforementioned artists, as well as Louis Armstrong and Dizzy Gillespie, among others. On top of that, he led many of his own big bands over his career, occasionally having one on each coast simultaneously.
He met his late wife, famed singer Pearl Bailey, through Duke Ellington, and married her in 1952. The couple had one child, a daughter, Deedee, before Bailey died in 1990 at 72.
Bellson has been inducted into both the Modern Drummer and Percussive Arts Society Halls of Fame. In 1994, the National Endowment for the Arts named him a "master of jazz," calling him one of "the foremost big-band drummers of the swing and post-swing eras." His last recording was an album with Clark Terry and his big band, called 'Louie & Clark Expedition 2.'
More About Louis Bellson | Download Louis Belson Songs | Buy Louis Bellson CDs
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