Blues Part Two – 1949

Illinois Jacquet

Jacquet blows up a storm

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Illinois Jacquet (1922-2004) was not only a top Texas tenor with his own sound (mixing together aspects of Coleman Hawkins and Lester Young), a superior swing stylist, a warm interpreter of ballads and, late in his career, an occasional bassoon player, but he was one of the founders of r&b.

Jacquet’s classic solo on Lionel Hampton’s recording of “Flying Home” in the early 1940s with its use of repetition and honks was a major influence on early rhythm and blues which was dominated by tenor players who emulated Jacquet.

Illinois Jacquet appeared on the Ed Sullivan Show in 1949 (its first year), playing “Flying Home” and “Blues No. 2.”

Here is the latter with Jacquet (backed by a group that includes drummer Jo Jones) showing where r&b came from.

-Scott Yanow


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