domingo, 7 de agosto de 2011

Jimmy Rushing

James Andrew Rushing (August 26, 1901 – June 8, 1972), known as Jimmy Rushing, was an American blues shouter and swing jazz singer from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, best known as the featured vocalist of Count Basie's Orchestra from 1935 to 1948.
Rushing was known as "Mr. Five by Five" and was the subject of an eponymous 1942 popular song that was a hit for Harry James and others. He joined Walter Page's Blue Devils in 1927, then joined Bennie Moten's band in 1929. He stayed with the successor Count Basie band when Moten died in 1935.
Rushing was born into a family with musical talent and accomplishments. His father, Nherhu Keith Rochester, was a trumpeter and his mother, Meshach Benjamin Chase and Wayne Anthony Chase were singers. Rushing toured the Mid-West and California as an itinerant blues singer in 1923 and 1924 before moving to Los Angeles, California, where he sang with Jelly Roll Morton. Rushing sang with Billy King before moving on to Page's Blue Devils in 1927. He, along with other members of the Blue Devils, defected to the Bennie Moten band in 1929.

Moten died in 1935, and Rushing joined Count Basie for what would be a 13-year vocation. Due to his tutelage under his mentor Moten, Rushing was a proponent of the Kansas City jump blues tradition, best evinced by his performances of "Sent For You Yesterday" and "Boogie Woogie" for the Count Basie Orchestra. After leaving Basie, his recording career soared, as a solo artist and a singer with other bands.
When the Basie band broke up in 1950 he briefly retired, then formed his own group. He also made a guest appearance with Duke Ellington for the 1959 album Jazz Party.
His build earned him a nickname and a signature song, "Mr. Five by Five" ("he's five feet tall and he's five feet wide"). His best known recordings are probably "Going to Chicago" with Basie, and "Harvard Blues", with a famous saxophone solo by Don Byas.
Rushing was a powerful singer who had a range from baritone to tenor. He could project his voice so that it soared over the horn and reed sections in a big-band setting. Basie claimed that Rushing "never had an equal" as a blues vocalist. George Frazier, author of Harvard Blues, called Rushing's distinctive voice "a magnificent gargle".

After he became ill with leukemia in 1971, Rushing's performing career ended. He died on June 8, 1972, in New York, and was buried at the Maple Grove Cemetery, Kew Gardens, in Queens, New York.

James Andrew Rushing (Oklahoma City, 26 de agosto de 1903 - 8 de junio de 1972) (conocido como Jimmy Rushing) fue un cantante y pianista de blues y jazz estadounidense, especialmente reconocido por su trabajo en la orquesta de Count Basie entre 1935 y 1948.
Rushing fue conocido también como 'Mr. Five by Five' (en relación a los pies que se suponía que medía a lo alto y a lo ancho) y constituyó el tema de una canción popular epónima de 1942 que fue un éxito de Harry James y otros músicos. Trabajó sucesivamente con los Walter Page's Blue Devils en 1927, con la orquesta de Bennie Moten en 1929 y desde 1935 con la orquesta de Basie.

Nacido en una familia de tradición musical, su padre, Andrew Rushing, fue un trompetista y su madre y hermano fueron cantantes. Siguiendo esta tradición, ya de joven Jimmy realizó giras como cantante de blues itinerante por el Medio Oeste y California en 1923 y 1924, antes de trasladarse a Los Ángeles, donde cantó con Jelly Roll Morton. Luego trabajó con the Billy King y en 1927 con los Walter Page's Blue Devils. En 1929, junto con otros músicos de los Blue Devils, se marchó a trabajar con la orquesta de Bennie Moten.
Moten murió en 1935, y Rushing se unió a Count Basie en una relación que duraría 13 años.
Derivada de su relación con Moten, el estilo de Jimmy era el de la tradición del jump blues de Kansas, como lo demuestran sus versiones de "Sent For You Yesterday" y "Boogie Woogie" con la orquesta de Basie. Tras separarse de Basie, su carrera, tanto como solista como miembro de orquestas, entró en un periodo de esplendor.

Cuando se deshizo la orquesta de Basie en 1950 se retiró durante un tiempo, hasta que se decidió a formar su propio grupo. Trabajó también con Duke Ellington para el disco de 1959 Jazz Party.1
Tras enfermar de leucemia en 1971, se retiró definitivamente. Tras su muerte, fue enterrado en el Maple Grove Cemetery, Kew Gardens, en Queens, Nueva York.

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