Roy Eldridge
Written by Dan Miller

(1911-1989) Eldridge was one of the most adventurous and exciting soloists in jazz history. He set new technical standards on the instrument, expanding the range and playing blistering tempos.

Roy came to prominence in the mid-thirties recording with Teddy Hill and Fletcher Henderson (influencing a legion of young trumpeters, most notably Dizzy Gillespie). The first half of the forties found Roy working with the bands of Gene Krupa (After You've Gone and Artie Shaw (Let Me Off Uptown). During the bebop revolution, Roy (and like-minded contemporary Coleman Hawkins) embraced the challenges of the new music and locked horns often with the new generation. Roy thrived in the environment of the jam session, and he especially relished facing other trumpeters, most notably Dizzy Gillespie (Roy and Diz). He would go on to work and record with Norman Granz's Jazz at the Philharmonic and co-lead a group with Coleman Hawkins.

Roy's bravura and adventurous improvisations would be his trademark for the rest of his career.

© 2002 Dan Miller
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