Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Billy Taylor, RIP

Today, I claimed Billy Taylor for my own.

He lived for 89 years amongst ye.

The first draft of his New York Times obituary helps explain his importance. Helps explain to those who know him not.

Dr. Taylor has, in most recent years, directed the jazz progam at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, DC. Taylor, a graduate of DC's Dunbar High School, high-tailed it from DC to New York in time to participate in the birth of bebop.

He eventually worked his way into combos featuring Bird Parker and Dizzy Gillespie.

He graduated to become house pianist at Birdland.

Lucky bastardo . . . .

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