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Jack Sheldon
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    (November 30, 1931-December 27, 2019)
    Born in Jacksonville, Florida
    Jazz trumpeter
    Performed with Stan Kenton, Art Pepper, and Gerry Mulligan
    Recorded the solo albums 'The Jack Sheldon Quintet' (1955), 'Jack's Groove' (1961), 'The Warm World of Jack Sheldon' (1968), 'The Cool World of Jack Sheldon' (1969), 'Playin' It Straight' (1981), and 'Playing for Change' (1997)
    Music director and sidekick on 'The Merv Griffin Show' (1962-80)
    Appeared in the films 'Freaky Friday' (1976), 'For the Boys' (1991) and 'The Radioland Murders' (1994)
    Sang in the Schoolhouse Rocks cartoons 'Conjunction Junction' and 'I'm Just a Bill'
    Provided the voice of Louie the Lightning Bug in a series of public service announcements promoting electrical safety
    He noted, 'Stan Kenton wouldn't let me sing 'cause he was always afraid I would say something too off color -- which I probably would have.'
    He starred in the short-lived sitcom 'Run, Buddy, Run,' which was cancelled midway thru its debut season (1967).
    He abused alcohol and cocaine.
    Henry Mancini said, 'If I've got a couple making passionate love onscreen and I'm writing the score, it's Jack Sheldon's trumpet I want.'
    He spoofed his 'Schoolhouse Rock' appearances in episodes of The Simpsons and Family Guy.
    After a stroke limited his ability to use his right hand (2001), he taught himself how to play trumpet left-handed and continued performing until shortly before his death.
    He had been clean and sober for more than thirty years when he died.

Credit: C. Fishel

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