Live and act
Higgins started out as a rhythm and blues musician under Bo Diddley , Amos Milburn and Jimmy Witherspoon . In 1953 he joined his friend Don Cherry's Jazz Messiahs . Around 1956 he recorded with Lucky Thompson and Red Mitchell , during which time he also got to know the still unknown Ornette Coleman , on whose debut LP Something Else !!!! He participated in The Music of Ornette Coleman in 1958. In 1959 he went with Coleman to New York City , where he worked with him until 1961 and u. a. performed on Free Jazz: A Collective Improvisation .
After that he was mostly active as a studio musician and worked as a sideman of Thelonious Monk ( At the Blackhawk , 1960), Dexter Gordon , Jackie McLean , Lee Morgan ( Search for the New Land 1964) and Archie Shepp . He was a frequent partner of the pianist Cedar Walton and ran the Brass Company with Bill Lee and Bill Hardman in the early 1970s .
In 1978 he returned to Los Angeles, where he released his first LP as a band leader the following year. He also performed with Joe Henderson and Slide Hampton . In 1986 he starred alongside Dexter Gordon in Bertrand Tavernier's film Round Midnight . In 1987 he went on a tour with Ornette Coleman, Don Cherry and Charlie Haden , during which the studio album In All Languages was created.
A year later he founded the World Stage with the poet Kamau Daaood , a cultural center in which he organized concerts and workshops for young jazz musicians , supported by musicians such as Ron Carter , Kenny Barron , Barry Harris and Geri Allen . Higgins also taught jazz at the University of California .
- Go! , with Dexter Gordon, 1962
- The Soldier ( Timeless , 1979) with Cedar Walton , Walter Booker , Roberta Davis , Monty Waters
- Soweto ( Red , 1979) with Bob Berg , Cedar Walton, Tony Dumas
- Mr. Billy Higgins (Evidence, 1984) with Gary Bias , Tony Dumas, Bill Henderson
- Billy Higgins Quintet (1987) with Harold Land , Cedar Walton, Oscar Brashear , David Williams
- Quartet West (1987) with Charlie Haden
- 3/4 For Peace (Red) with Harold Land, Bill Henderson, Jeff Littleton
- Which Way is East (2001) with Charles Lloyd
- Works by Billy Higgins in the catalog of the German National Library
- Billy Higgins at Drummerworld
- Obituary Mike Zwerin
- Billy Higgins at Discogs (English)
|ALTERNATIVE NAMES||Higgins, William|
|BRIEF DESCRIPTION||American jazz drummer|
|DATE OF BIRTH||October 11, 1936|
|PLACE OF BIRTH||Los Angeles , California|
|DATE OF DEATH||May 3, 2001|
|Place of death||Inglewood , California|