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Ben Webster
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    (March 27, 1909-September 20, 1973)
    Born in Kansas City, Missouri
    Jazz tenor saxophonist
    Played with the Duke Ellington orchestra (1935-36,1940-43,1948-49)
    Recorded the albums 'King of the Tenors' (1953), 'Music for Loving' (1955), 'Music with Feeling' (1955), 'Coleman Hawkins Encounters Ben Webster' (1957), 'Soulville' (1957), 'Ben Webster Meets Oscar Peterson' (1959), 'Gerry Mulligan Meets Ben Webster' (1959) and 'See You at the Fair' (1964)
    He started on violin and piano before taking up sax.
    Musicians who worked with him said he had a Jekyll and Hyde personality (usually dependent on how much he had been drinking).
    He left Ellington's band after an altercation in which he cut up one of Ellington's suits.
    With Lester Young and Coleman Hawkins, he was one of the 'big three' of swing-era tenor saxes.
    He successfully alternated between playing rough and raspy on uptempo numbers and with warmth and sentiment on ballads.
    The Penguin Guide to Jazz called him 'the best loved of all saxophonists, perhaps of all jazz musicians.'

Credit: C. Fishel

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