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Hackett performs at the Paramount Theatre in New York City in August 1946.
|Born||January 13, 1915|
Providence, Rhode Island
|Died||June 7, 1976 (aged 61)|
|Associated acts||Louis Armstrong, Glenn Miller, Tony Bennett, Benny Goodman, Ray McKinley, Jackie Gleason, Jack Teagarden, Pee Wee Russell, Lee Wiley, Horace Heidt,|
Robert Leo Hackett (January 31, 1915 – June 7, 1976) was an American jazz musician who played trumpet, cornet, and guitar with the bands of Glenn Miller and Benny Goodman in the late 1930s and early 1940s. Hackett was a featured soloist on some of the Jackie Gleason mood music albums during the 1950s.
Hackett was born in Providence, Rhode Island. He made his name as a follower of cornet player Bix Beiderbecke. Benny Goodman hired the talented twenty-three year old to recreate Bix's "I'm Coming Virginia" solo at his (Goodman's) 1938 Carnegie Hall concert. In the late 1930s Hackett played lead trumpet in the Vic Schoen Orchestra which backed the Andrews Sisters. Hackett can be heard on the soundtrack to the 1940 Fred Astaire movie Second Chorus.
In 1939 the talent agency MCA asked Hackett to form a big band with its backing. When the band failed, he was in substantial debt to MCA after it folded. He joined the bands of Horace Heidt and then Glenn Miller to pay this debt. To make matters worse, his lip was in bad shape after dental surgery, making it difficult for him to play the trumpet or cornet. Glenn Miller offering him a job as a guitarist. "When I joined the band and I was making good money at last, [...] [jazz critics] accused me of selling out. Hell I wasn't selling out, I was selling in! It's funny, isn't it, how you go right into the wastebasket with some critics the minute you become successful."
Despite lip problems, Hackett could play occasional, short solos, and he can be heard playing with the Glenn Miller Orchestra on "A String of Pearls". A dream come true for Hackett was his inclusion in Louis Armstrong's 1947 Town Hall Jazz Concert. In 1954, he appeared as a regular on the ABC variety show The Martha Wright Show, also known as The Packard Showroom.
His fame increased after he was hired by Jackie Gleason as a cornet soloist for some of Gleason's earliest mood music albums. Starting in 1952, he appeared on Gleason's first Capitol Records album, Music for Lovers Only. The record—as well as all of Gleason's next 10 albums—went gold. He appeared on six more of Gleason's albums. This association led directly to his signing with Capitol.
Mosaic Records released The Complete Capitol Bobby Hackett Solo Sessions on a 5-CD set which was a limited edition of 5,000 sets. Most of the tracks were from Gleason's mood music albums. According to the liner notes, Hackett received compensation of between $30 to $40 thousand for six albums for Gleason.
In 2012, Hackett was selected to be inducted into the Rhode Island Music Hall of Fame.
Bobby Hackett married Edna Lillian Lee Hackett (d.2000) in 1937. The Hacketts lived primarily in New York City and spent summers in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. They had a daughter, Barbara (d. 2003); and a son, Ernie, who became a professional drummer.
- In a Mellow Mood (Capitol, 1955)
- Coast Concert (Capitol, 1956)
- Gotham Jazz Scene (Capitol, 1957)
- Rendezvous (Capitol, 1957)
- Don't Take Your Love from Me (Capitol, 1958)
- Jazz Ultimate (Capitol, 1958)
- The Bobby Hackett Quartet (Capitol, 1959)
- Blues with a Kick (Capitol, 1959)
- Hawaii Swings (Capitol, 1960)
- Dream Awhile (Capitol, 1960)
- The Most Beautiful Horn in the World (Columbia, 1962)
- Night Love (Columbia, 1962)
- Bobby Hackett Plays Henry Mancini (Epic, 1962)
- Plays the Music of Bert Kaempfert (Epic, 1964)
- Hello Louis!: Plays the Music of Louis Armstrong (Epic, 1964)
- Trumpets' Greatest Hits (Epic, 1965)
- Trumpet de Luxe (CBS, 1966)
- Creole Cookin (Verve, 1967)
- That Midnight Touch (Project 3, 1967)
- A Time for Love (Project 3, 1967)
- Bobby/Billy/Brazil (Verve, 1968)
- This Is My Bag (Project 3, 1969)
- Live at the Roosevelt Grill (Chiaroscuro, 1970)
- Bobby Hackett and Vic Dickenson at the Royal Box (Hyannisport, 1972)
- What a Wonderful World (Flying Dutchman, 1973)
- Strike Up the Band (Flying Dutchman, 1975)
- Live in New Orleans (Riff, 1976)
- Featuring Vic Dickenson at the Roosevelt Grill (Chiaroscuro, 1977)
- Tin Roof Blues (Honey Dew, 1977)
- Butterfly Airs Vol. 1 (Honey Dew, 1977)
- Jazz Session (CBS, 1980)
With Jackie Gleason
- Music for Lovers Only (Capitol, 1952)
- Music to Make You Misty (Capitol, 1953)
- Music, Martinis, and Memories (Capitol, 1954)
- Jackie Gleason Presents Autumn Leaves (Capitol, 1955)
- Music to Remember Her (Capitol, 1955)
- Music to Change Her Mind (Capitol, 1956)
- Jackie Gleason Presents Music for the Love Hours (Capitol, 1957)
- Jackie Gleason Presents Lush Musical Interludes for That Moment (Capitol, 1959)
- The Most Beautiful Girl in the World (Pickwick/33, 1967)
- Louis Armstrong, Town Hall (RCA Victor, 1957)
- Tony Bennett, The Very Thought of You (Columbia, 1965)
- Tony Bennett, A Time for Love (Columbia, 1966)
- Teresa Brewer, Good News (Signature, 1974)
- Ruth Brown, Ruth Brown (Atlantic, 1957)
- Jim Cullum Jr., Goose Pimples (Audiophile, 1967)
- Eddie Condon, Midnight in Moscow (Epic, 1956)
- Eddie Condon, Eddie Condon On Stage (Saga, 1973)
- Dizzy Gillespie, Giants (Perception, 1971)
- Benny Goodman, The Famous 1938 Carnegie Hall Jazz Concert (Columbia, 1950)
- Bill Kenny, I Don't Stand a Ghost of a Chance with You (Decca, 1951)
- Glenn Miller, A String of Pearls (Bluebird, 1941)
- Glenn Miller, Rhapsody in Blue (Victor, 1942)
- Frank Sinatra, I've Got a Crush on You (Columbia, 1947)
- Frank Sinatra, Body and Soul (Columbia, 1947)
- Jack Teagarden, Jack Teagarden (Verve, 1962)
- Lee Wiley, Night in Manhattan (Columbia, 1955)
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- "Hackett refers to this solo as 'just a little exercise'" – Glenn Miller and His Orchestra, 269.
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- Refsnes, Hege. "St. Cecile Lodge #568: the Lodge of the Arts". www.stcecile.com. Retrieved 5 July 2018.
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