Barry Galbraith

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Barry Galbraith
Barry Galbraith (left) in the Columbia Picture studios, September 1947. Photograph by William P. Gottlieb.
Barry Galbraith (left) in the Columbia Picture studios, September 1947.
Photograph by William P. Gottlieb.
Background information
Born(1919-12-18)December 18, 1919
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, United States
DiedJanuary 13, 1983(1983-01-13) (aged 63)
Bennington, Vermont
Years active1940s–1970s

Joseph Barry Galbraith (December 18, 1919 – January 13, 1983) was an American jazz guitarist.[1]

Galbraith moved to New York City from McDonald, PA in the early 1940s and found work playing with Babe Russin, Art Tatum, Red Norvo, Hal McIntyre, and Teddy Powell. He played with Claude Thornhill in 1941–1942 and again in 1946–1949 after serving in the Army. He did a tour with Stan Kenton in 1953.

Galbraith did extensive work as a studio musician for NBC and CBS in the 1950s and 1960s; among those he played with were Miles Davis, Michel Legrand, Tal Farlow, Coleman Hawkins, George Barnes, John Lewis, Hal McKusick, Oscar Peterson, Max Roach, George Russell, John Carisi, Urbie Green, and Tony Scott. He also accompanied the singers Anita O'Day, Chris Connor, Billie Holiday, Helen Merrill, Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington on record. He was a mentor to Ralph Patt.[2]

In 1961, he appeared in the film After Hours. In 1963-1964 he played on Gil Evans's album The Individualism of Gil Evans, and in 1965 he appeared on Stan Getz and Eddie Sauter's soundtrack to the 1965 film Mickey One. From 1970 to 1975 he taught at CUNY and published a guitar method book in 1982. From 1976–77 Galbraith taught guitar at New England Conservatory in Boston.

He died from cancer in Bennington at the age of 63.[3]


As leader[edit]

  • The Rhythm Section (Epic, 1956)
  • Rhythm + 1 (Epic, 1956)
  • Guitar and the Wind (Decca, 1958)

As sideman[edit]

With Chris Connor

  • Chris Connor (Atlantic, 1956)
  • Chris Connor Sings the George Gershwin Almanac of Song (Atlantic, 1957)
  • Sings Ballads of the Sad Cafe (Atlantic, 1959)
  • A Portrait of Chris (Atlantic, 1960)

With Don Elliott

  • Don Elliot Sings (Bethlehem, 1955)
  • Mellophone (Bethlehem, 1955)
  • The Voices of Don Elliott (ABC-Paramount, 1957)
  • The Mello Sound (Decca, 1958)
  • Love Is a Necessary Evil (Columbia, 1962)

With Urbie Green

  • The Persuasive Trombone of Urbie Green (Command, 1960)
  • The Persuasive Trombone of Urbie Green Vol. 2 (Command, 1962)
  • Urbie Green and His 6-Tet (Command, 1963)
  • Twenty-One Trombones (Project 3 Total Sound, 1967)

With Coleman Hawkins

With Milt Jackson

With Hal McKusick

  • East Coast Jazz Series No. 8 (Bethlehem, 1955)
  • In a Twentieth-Century Drawing Room (RCA Victor, 1956)
  • Jazz at the Academy (Coral, 1957)
  • The Jazz Workshop (RCA Victor, 1957)
  • Cross Section-Saxes (Decca, 1958)
  • Hal Mckusick Plays/Betty St. Claire Sings (Fresh Sound, 1989)

With Carmen McRae

  • Birds of a Feather (Decca, 1958)
  • Mad About the Man, Carmen McRae Sings Noel Coward (Decca, 1958)
  • Second to None (Mainstream, 1964)

With Helen Merrill

With George Russell

With Creed Taylor

  • Shock Music in Hi-Fi (ABC-Paramount, 1958)
  • Lonelyville: The Nervous Beat (ABC-Paramount, 1959)
  • The Best of the Barrack Ballads (ABC-Paramount, 1960)

With others


  1. ^ Ferguson, Jim (2002). Barry Kernfeld (ed.). The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, Vol. 2 (2nd ed.). New York: Grove's Dictionaries. p. 4. ISBN 1561592846.
  2. ^ Peterson, Jonathan (2002). "Tuning in Thirds". American Lutherie. 72 (Winter). Tacoma, Washington: The Guild of American Luthiers: 36–43. ISSN 1041-7176. Archived from the original on 21 October 2011. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
  3. ^ "Barry Galbraith, Guitarist; Recorded in 50's and 60's". The New York Times. 27 January 1983. Retrieved 27 October 2020.

External links[edit]