Buster Harding

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Buster Harding
Birth nameLavere Harding
Born(1912-03-19)March 19, 1912[1][2][3]
Ontario, Canada
DiedNovember 14, 1965(1965-11-14) (aged 53)
New York City, New York, United States
GenresSwing music
Occupation(s)Musician, composer, arranger
Associated actsCount Basie

Lavere "Buster" Harding (March 19, 1917 – November 14, 1965) was a Canadian-born American jazz pianist, composer and arranger.

Early life[edit]

Born to Benjamin "Ben" and Ada (née Shreve) Harding in North Buxton, Ontario,[1][3] Harding was raised in Cleveland, Ohio, where as a teenager he started on his own band.[4]

Later life and career[edit]

In 1939 Harding went to work for the Teddy Wilson big band, and then in the early 1940s went to work for the Coleman Hawkins band, and then Cab Calloway. He became a freelance arranger and worked with Benny Goodman, Artie Shaw, Roy Eldridge, Dizzy Gillespie, and Count Basie, among others.[4]

In 1949 he was the musical director for Billie Holiday recording sessions. In the early 1960s Harding played with Jonah Jones, though he was known primarily as an arranger and composer.[4] Harding did not record as a leader.[5] He died on November 14, 1965, in New York City.[5]

Select discography[edit]

With Count Basie

With Roy Eldridge

With Dizzy Gillespie

With Billie Holiday

  • Broadcast Performances, Vol. 1: Radio And TV Broadcasts (1949-52) (ESP Disk)
  • Broadcast Performances, Vol. 2: Radio And TV Broadcasts (1953-56) (ESP Disk)


  1. ^ a b Abdul, Raoul (September 14, 2005). "Deep roots in 'Musical Buxton'". New York Amsterdam News.
  2. ^ Miller, Mark (1997). Such Melodious Racket: The Lost History of Jazz in Canada, 1914-1949. Mercury Press. p. 141. ISBN 978-1-55128-046-2.
  3. ^ a b 1930 United States Census. -- Ohio -- Cuyahoga -- Cleveland. - United States Census Bureau.
  4. ^ a b c Carr, Ian; Digby Fairweather; Brian Priestley (2004). The Rough Guide to Jazz. Rough Guides. p. 335.
  5. ^ a b Yanow, Scott " Buster Harding – Biography by Scott Yanow". AllMusic. Retrieved January 25, 2016.