Lady Be Good and Memories Of You – 1955

Clifford Brown

 

The only film that exists of the great trumpeter

Clifford Brown (1930-56) was one of the finest trumpeters of all time, but one whose life was tragically cut short when he was just 25 in a car accident.

Brown had a fat tone, had mastered bebop, was influenced by Fats Navarro, and in turn became an early influence for Lee Morgan, Freddie Hubbard and Woody Shaw.

While he recorded rewarding music during his final four years, he was only caught on film once, for a television show hosted by Soupy Sales, a long-time jazz fan.

Brown performed two numbers on the show, “Lady Be Good” and “Memories Of You”; the backing rhythm section (probably the show’s house musicians) are unidentified.

This priceless film clip was discovered more than 30 years after Clifford Brown’s passing.

-Scott Yanow

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