Artie Bernstein

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Artie Bernstein
Birth nameArthur Bernstein
Born(1909-02-04)February 4, 1909
Brooklyn, New York, U.S.
DiedJanuary 4, 1964(1964-01-04) (aged 54)
Los Angeles, California
InstrumentsDouble bass, cello
Years active1929–1963
Associated actsTommy Dorsey, Ben Pollack

Arthur "Artie" Bernstein (February 4, 1909 – January 4, 1964)[1] was an American jazz double bassist.

Born in Brooklyn, New York, he started his musical career playing cello on board cruise ships to South America, and also studied law at New York University. However, by 1929 he had started playing bass, and began performing in clubs around New York City. He performed with trumpeter Red Nichols, Red Norvo and others, and recorded with Ben Pollack, Jimmy and Tommy Dorsey, and many others in the 1930s. In 1939 he performed with Benny Goodman at the second From Spirituals to Swing concert.[2][3] He fell out with Goodman in 1941 - Goodman fiddled with Bernstein's music-stand light so that he would have problems reading the music and appear incompetent, giving Goodman a pretext to fire him.[4]

However, he won the Down Beat readers' poll in 1943. He later moved to Los Angeles and worked in the film industry for such companies as Universal Studios and Warner Bros., continuing to work for the latter organization until 1963.[4]

He died in Los Angeles at the age of 54.[1]


  1. ^ a b Barry Dean Kernfeld, ed. (2002). "Bernstein, Artie". The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. 1. New York: Macmillan. p. 204. ISBN 0-333-69189-X. Retrieved 2008-04-11.
  2. ^ From Spirituals to Swing, liner notes, Definitive Records CD reissue, 2001
  3. ^ PBS
  4. ^ a b Biography by Eugene Chadbourne at