Bill Henderson (performer)

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Bill Henderson
William Randall Henderson

(1930-08-01)August 1, 1930
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
DiedApril 3, 2016(2016-04-03) (aged 85)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Occupation(s)Actor, singer
Years active1952–2016

William Randall Henderson (August 1, 1930 – April 3, 2016) was an American television and film actor, and jazz singer.


Henderson was born in Chicago, Illinois. Henderson began his professional music career in 1952, performing in Chicago with Ramsey Lewis, and began recording as a leader after a move to New York in 1958. He subsequently recorded with jazz pianist Horace Silver on a vocal version of Silver's "Señor Blues" which was a jukebox hit (in the mid-1950s), and remains one of jazz label Blue Note's top-selling singles.[1] Additionally, Henderson performed and recorded with Oscar Peterson (Bill Henderson with the Oscar Peterson Trio), Jimmy Smith, Count Basie, Yusef Lateef, and Eddie Harris. He was under contract to the Vee Jay label between 1958 and 1961, who recorded his first album as leader, Bill Henderson Sings (1958),[1] which features trumpeter Booker Little among the sidemen.

Beginning in the mid-1970s, he frequently appeared on television in supporting, usually one-time roles. His film roles have followed a similar trend — minor and supporting roles. Henderson also recorded his own vocal tracks as "King Blues" for the comedy film Get Crazy (1983). Henderson made a guest vocal appearance on Charlie Haden's album The Art of the Song (1999).



  • Bill Henderson Sings (with Ramsey Lewis Trio, Wynton Kelly Sextet; arranged by Benny Golson, Frank Wess) (Vee-Jay #1015, 1959)
  • Bill Henderson [self-titled] (with Eddie Higgins Quartet, Tommy Flanagan Quartet, Thad Jones Big Band, Jimmy Jones Strings) (Vee-Jay #1031, 1961)
  • Please Send Me Someone To Love (with Eddie Harris, Eddie Higgins, Joe Diorio, Rail Wilson, Al Duncan) (Vee-Jay International #3055, 1960-1961 [rel. 1974]; reissued as Collectables #7144, 2000)
  • Bill Henderson with the Oscar Peterson Trio (with Oscar Peterson, Ray Brown, Ed Thigpen) (MGM #4128, 1963; reissued as Verve/Polygram #837937, 1989)
  • When My Dreamboat Comes Home (with Jimmy Jones Orchestra; arranged by Rene Hall, Jimmy Jones, Bobby Scott) (Verve #8619, 1965)
  • Live In Concert With The Count Basie Band (Monad #802, 1966 [rel. 1995])
  • Live At The Times (with Joyce Collins, Dave Mackay, Tom Azarello, Jimmie Smith) (Discovery #779, 1975 [rel. 1977])
  • Bill Henderson Live: Joey Revisited (with Joyce Collins, Dave Mackay, Steve LaSpina, Jerry Coleman) (Monad #807, 1976 [rel. 1995])
  • Street Of Dreams (with Joyce Collins, Dave Mackay, Jim Hughart, Jimmie Smith, Pete Christlieb) (Discovery #802, 1979)
  • A Tribute To Johnny Mercer (with Joyce Collins, Dave Mackay, Joey Baron) (Discovery #846, 1981)
  • Nancy Wilson, Presents Great Jazz Night: Red Hot & Cool II (featuring Bill Henderson) (LaserDisc, 1990)
  • White Men Can't Jump [original soundtrack] (Bill as member of the Venice Beach Boys) (Capitol/EMI #98414, 1992)
  • Charlie Haden Quartet West, The Art of the Song (featuring Shirley Horn, Bill Henderson) (Verve/Polygram #547403, 1999)
  • Mike Melvoin With Charlie Haden Featuring Bill Henderson, The Capitol Sessions (Naim Audio Ltd, 2000)
  • Chico Hamilton, Juniflip (featuring Bill Henderson) (Joyous Shout, 2006)
  • Live At The Kennedy Center (with Ed Vodicka Trio) (Web Only Jazz, 2006)
  • Beautiful Memory: Bill Henderson Live At The Vic (with Tateng Katindig, Chris Conner, Roy McCurdy) (Ahuh Productions, 2008)


  • Something's Gotta Give (Discovery #932, 1986) - compilation of Discovery #802 [7 songs], and Discovery #846 [7 songs].
  • Sings (Best Of) (Suite Beat #2016, 1986) - compilation of Vee-Jay #1015 [6 songs], Vee-Jay #1031 [4 songs], and Vee-Jay International #3055 [4 songs].
  • His Complete Vee-Jay Recordings, Volume One (Vee-Jay LLP #NVJ2-909, 1993; reissued as Koch Jazz #8548, 2000)
  • His Complete Vee-Jay Recordings, Volume Two (Vee-Jay LLP #NVJ2-912, 1993; reissued as Koch Jazz #8572, 2000)




  1. ^ a b Barnes, Mike (6 April 2016). "Bill Henderson, Jazz Vocalist and Actor, Dies at 90". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 7 April 2016.

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