Billy Butler (guitarist)

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Billy Butler
Billy Butler.jpg
Billy Butler in 1977
Background information
Born (1924-12-15)December 15, 1924
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
Died March 20, 1991(1991-03-20) (aged 66)
Teaneck, New Jersey
Genres Jazz, soul
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Guitar
Associated acts Bill Doggett

William Butler Jr., known as Billy Butler (December 15, 1924 – March 20, 1991) was an American soul jazz guitarist.[1]

Life and career[edit]

He was born in Philadelphia.[1] He played with The Harlemaires, Tommy Flanagan, tenor saxophonist Floyd "Candy" Johnson, Houston Person, organist Harry "Doc" Bagby, Benny Goodman, Dizzy Gillespie, Jimmy Smith, David "Fathead" Newman, Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, Bill Doggett, King Curtis, Sammy Price, William (Wild Bill) Davison, Dinah Washington, Panama Francis, Johnny Hodges, Norris Turney, Al Casey, Jackie Williams and others.[2] [3] [4]

He also co-wrote, with Bill Doggett, the 1956 R&B hit "Honky Tonk". He was with the Doggett band from 1954 to 1964 and recorded many albums with the organist.

He is credited as the guitarist on Joey Dee and the Starliters' "Peppermint Twist, Parts 1 & 2" recorded in September 1961 at the Peppermint Lounge in New York City. Part 1 of the song went to the top of the Billboard pop charts in January 1962.[5]

Butler died at home in Teaneck, New Jersey, in 1991.[1]


As leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With Gene Ammons

With Charles Brown

With Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis

With Bill Doggett

  • Moon Dust (King 395-502, 1956)
  • Hot Doggett (King 395-514, 1956)
  • As You Desire Me (King 395-523, 1956)
  • Everybody Dance the Honky Tonk (King 395-531, 1956)
  • Dame Dreaming With Bill Doggett (King 395-532, 1957)
  • A Salute to Ellington (King 533, 1957)
  • The Doggett Beat for Dancing Feet (King 557, 1957)
  • Candle Glow (King 563, 1958)
  • Swingin' Easy (King 582, 1958)
  • Dance Awhile With Doggett (King 585, 1958)
  • 12 Songs of Christmas (King 600, 1958) [reissue of King 295-89 plus 6 additional tracks]
  • Hold It! (King 609, 1959)
  • High and Wide (King 633, 1959)
  • Big City Dance Party (King 641, 1959)
  • Bill Doggett on Tour [not a live album] (King 667, 1959)
  • For Reminiscent Lovers, Romantic Songs By Bill Doggett (King 706, 1960)
  • Back With More Bill Doggett (King 723, 1960)
  • The Many Moods of Bill Doggett (King 778, 1962)
  • Bill Doggett Plays American Songs, Bossa Nova Style (King 830, 1963)
  • Impressions (King 868, 1963)
  • The Best of Bill Doggett [compilation] (King 908, 1964)
  • Wow! (ABC-Paramount, 1964)

With Frank Foster

With Dizzy Gillespie

With Richard "Groove" Holmes

With Illinois Jacquet

With Eric Kloss

With Yusef Lateef

With Les McCann

With Jimmy McGriff

  • The Groover (Jazz America Marketing (JAM), 1982)

With Memphis Slim

With Oliver Nelson

With David Newman

With Houston Person

With Dave Pike

With Bernard Purdie

With Shirley Scott

With Jimmy Smith

With Sonny Stitt

With Ernie Wilkins


  1. ^ a b c Eagle, Bob; LeBlanc, Eric S. (2013). Blues - A Regional Experience. Santa Barbara: Praeger Publishers. p. 335. ISBN 978-0313344237. 
  2. ^ Wynn, Ron; Lieberson, Richard. "Billy Butler Biography". Allmusic. Retrieved 2007-06-23. 
  3. ^ New York Times obituary.
  4. ^ Find A Grave Dan Pollock.
  5. ^ de Heer, Dik. "In the can: September 1961". Retrieved 2017-01-13. 

External links[edit]