DeFranco in September 1947
|Birth name||Boniface Ferdinand Leonard DeFranco|
February 17, 1923|
Camden, New Jersey, U.S.
|Died||December 24, 2014
Panama City, Florida, U.S.
He began his professional career just as swing music and big bands—many of which were led by clarinetists like Artie Shaw, and Benny Goodman—were in decline. While most jazz clarinet players did not adapt to this change, DeFranco successfully continued to play clarinet exclusively, and was one of the few bebop clarinetists.
In 1950, DeFranco spent a year with Count Basie's Septet.
During the years 1960-64, DeFranco released four innovative quartet albums as co-leader with the accordionist Tommy Gumina.
- Buddy De Franco with Kenny Drew, Jimmy Raney, Teddy Kotick/Curley Russelll, and Art Taylor/Art Blakey, 1952.
- Mr. Clarinet (as the Buddy DeFranco Quartet) with Art Blakey, Milt Hinton, Kenny Drew, 1953
- Buddy DeFranco and Oscar Peterson Play George Gershwin, 1954
- Cooking the Blues with Sonny Clark, Tal Farlow, Gene Wright, Bobby White, 1954
- Sweet and Lovely with Sonny Clark, Tal Farlow, Gene Wright, Bobby White, 1954
- Generalissimo with Harry "Sweets" Edison, Bob Hardaway, Jimmy Rowles, Barney Kessel, Curtis Counce, Alvin Stoller, 1958
- Plays Nelson Riddle's Cross Country Suite, 1958
- Live Date! with Herbie Mann, Bob Hardaway, Victor Feldman, Pete Jolly, Barney Kessel, Scott LaFaro, Frank DeVito, 1958
- Pacific Standard (Swingin'!) Time, Tommy Gumina, 1960
- Presenting the Quartet, Tommy Gumina, 1961
- Kaleidoscope, Tommy Gumina, 1962
- Polytones, Tommy Gumina, 1963
- The Girl From Ipanema, Tommy Gumina, 1964
- Blues Bag with Victor Feldman, Curtis Fuller, Lee Morgan, Art Blakey, Freddie Hill, Victor Sproles, 1964
- Do You Want To Dance with The World Famous Glenn Miller Orchestra, Directed By Buddy DeFranco, 1969
- Free Fall with Victor Feldman, John Chiodini, Joe Cocuzzo, Victor Sproles, 1974
- Like Someone in Love with Tal Farlow, Derek Smith, George Duvivier, Ronnie Bedford, 1977
- Jazz Party: First Time Together with Terry Gibbs, 1981, Palo Alto Records
- Hark with Joe Pass, Oscar Peterson, Martin Drew, Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen, 1985
- Holiday for Swing with John Campbell, Terry Gibbs, Todd Coolman, Gerry Gibbs, 1988
- Born to Swing! with Al Grey, Lin Biviano, Dave Cooper, 1988
- Nobody Else But Me, 1989
- Chip off the Old Bop with Jimmy Cobb, Keter Betts, Joe Cohn, Larry Novak, 1992
- Buenos Aires Concerts with Jorge Navarro, 1995
- Mr. Lucky, Live album with Albert Dailey, George Duvivier, Ronnie Bedford, Joe Cohn, 1981/1997
- Gone with the Wind with Todd Coolman, Jerry Coleman, 1999
- Do Nothing Till You Hear from Us with Dave McKenna, Joe Cohn, 1999
- Cookin' the Books with Butch Miles, John Pizzarelli, Martin Pizzarelli, Raymond Louis Kennedy, 2004
- Wailers with Harry "Sweets" Edison, Barney Kessel, Jimmy Rowles, 2006
With Dizzy Gillespie
- The Complete RCA Victor Recordings, 1937-1949 (Bluebird, 1995)
- Jazz clarinetist great Buddy DeFranco dead at 91
- Nelson-Gabriel, Melissa; and Gans, Charles J. via Associated Press. "Camden-born jazz great Buddy DeFranco dies at 91", Courier-Post, December 28, 2014. Accessed December 29, 2014. "Born in 1923 in Camden, DeFranco was raised in South Philadelphia and began playing the clarinet at age 9. By age 14, he had won a national Tommy Dorsey Swing contest and began his road career in 1939."
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