Jimmy Knepper

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Jimmy Knepper

Jimmy Knepper (* 22. November 1927 in Los Angeles / California as James M. Knepper ; † 14. June 2003 in Triadelphia , Ohio County / West Virginia ) was an American jazz - trombone .


Knepper learned to play the trombone as a child and performed with small dance bands at an early age. In the late 1940s and early 1950s he was a member of the bands of Freddie Slack , Roy Porter , Charlie Spivak , Charlie Barnet , Woody Herman , Claude Thornhill , Charlie Parker and Stan Kenton . From 1957 to 1962 he worked with the various groups of Charles Mingus and was involved in the recording of the records Tijuana Moods , East Coasting , Mingus Ah Um , Mingus Dynasty and Tonight at Noon . At the same time he also worked with Tony Scott , Stan Kenton and Herbie Mann , with whom he went on a tour of Africa in 1960. He also played with Gil Evans , so in 1960 with Out of the Cool and 1963/64 in the sessions for the album The Individualism of Gil Evans and with Benny Goodman , whom he accompanied on a tour of the Soviet Union in 1962 . He then worked on the Broadway show Funny Girl .

From 1968 to 1972 Knepper was a member of the Thad Jones / Mel Lewis Orchestra and performed with the Lee-Konitz- Nonett. In 1977 he took part in Gil Evans' birthday concert ( Priestess ) and last worked with Charles Mingus ( Cumbia & Jazz Fusion ). Since the early 1980s he has also worked regularly as musical director with the Mingus Dynasty , which maintained the repertoire of Mingus until Parkinson's disease ended his musical career.

Jimmy Knepper was also instrumental in publishing Dean Benedetti's complete collection of Charlie Parker transcriptions on Mosaic Records in 1990.


Web links

Commons : Jimmy Knepper  - collection of images, videos and audio files


  1. The recordings of Knepper's first album under his own name are also part of Debut Rarities, Vol. 1 and Charles Mingus ´ The Complete Debut Recordings -
  2. The new edition (with recordings from 1979 from the Tell Me ... album) with the liner notes by Brian Priestley was published under the title Muted Joys on the Affinity label (AFF756).