September 20, 1921|
Cleveland, Ohio, U.S.
|Died||December 26, 2005
DeArango was self-taught on guitar. While he attended Ohio State University, he played with Dixieland bands at night. After serving in the Army from 1942–44, he moved to New York City and worked first with Don Byas and Ben Webster. A year later, he played on an album with Sarah Vaughan, Charlie Parker, and Dizzy Gillespie. He worked as a sideman with Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Ike Quebec, Slam Stewart, then led his own band with Terry Gibbs.
In 1947, DeArango returned to Cleveland, where he ran a record store and performed locally for two decades. He recorded an album with pianist John Williams in 1954. Late in the 1960s, he managed the rock band Henry Tree and performed regularly in the 1970s at the Smiling Dog Saloon in Cleveland with Ernie Krivda and Skip Hadden, mixing hard rock and free jazz.
His next recording was on the album Another Time/Another Place (Muse, 1978) by Barry Altschul, then 298 Bridge Street (1981) by Kenny Werner, and Names (1983) by Jamey Haddad. In 1993, he released his second solo album, Anything Went, with Joe Lovano. He entered a nursing home in 1999 and suffered dementia until his death seven years later, although he continued performing locally until late 2001.
- Bill DeArango (EmArcy, 1954)
- Anything Went (GM, 1996)
- Jumping with Ventura, Charlie Ventura (EmArcy, 1955)
- Another Time, Another Place, Barry Altschul (Muse, 1978)
- Rarest Sessions of the '40's, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis (1982)
- Names, Jamey Haddad (1983)
- Crazy Rhythms, Charlie Kennedy and Charlie Ventura (Savoy, 1992)
- The Complete RCA Victor Recordings, Dizzy Gillespie (Bluebird, 1995)
- Ankeny, Jason. "Bill DeArango". AllMusic. Retrieved 27 February 2017.