Happy Birthday Joanne Brackeen

July 26, 1938

Relaxin’ At Camarillo

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Pianist Joanne Grogan was born on July 26, 1938 in Ventura, California.

She attended the Los Angeles Conservatory of Music and then became part of the Los Angeles jazz scene, performing with Deter Gordon, Teddy Edwards, Charles Brackeen and many others.

She married Brackeen in 1965 and soon moved to New York where she became the first female member of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers before working with Joe Henderson (1972-75) and Stan Getz (1975-77).

Brackeen, who has generally led her own trios and quartets ever since, has long had her own inside/outside post bop style, able to sound very comfortable and personal on both swinging material and freer explorations.

Here is Joanne Brackeen performing Charlie Parker’s “Relaxin’ At Camarillo” in 1986 with the Joe Henderson Quartet.


Joanne Brackeen, piano
Joe Henderson, tenor sax
Kim Clarke, bass
Keith Killgo, drums

-Scott Yanow


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