Dizzy Reece

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Dizzy Reece
Birth name Alphonso Son Reece
Born (1931-01-05) 5 January 1931 (age 85)
Kingston, Jamaica
Genres Hard bop jazz
Occupation(s) Trumpeter

Alphonso Son "Dizzy" Reece (born 5 January 1931) is a Jamaican-born hard bop jazz trumpeter with a distinctive sound and compositional style. Dizzy Reece is one of the lesser-known but top-ranking, legendary Jamaican jazz musicians, a group that includes fellow Jamaican-born saxophonists Bertie King, Joe Harriott, Roland Alphonso, Wilton Gaynair, Sonny Bradshaw and Tommy McCook, trombonist Don Drummond, pianists Monty Alexander and Cecil Lloyd, bassists Lloyd Brevett, Coleridge Goode, guitarist Ernest Ranglin and percussionists Count Ossie and Lloyd Knibb.


Reece was born on 5 January 1931 in Kingston, Jamaica, the son of a silent film pianist. He attended the Alpha Boys School (famed in Jamaica for its musical alumni), switching from baritone to trumpet when he was 14 years old. A full-time musician from the age of 16, he moved to London in 1948 and spent the 1950s working in Europe, much of that time in Paris. He played with Don Byas, Kenny Clarke, Frank Foster and Thad Jones, among others. Recording with fine British musicians, he led several sessions in London in 1955-1957. Passing through London where his first Blue Note session took place, Donald Byrd and Art Taylor joined in for his strong first Blue Note album.

Winning praise from the likes of Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins, the trumpeter emigrated to New York City in 1959 and recorded with several of Davis' bandmates, but found New York in the 1960s a struggle.

Reece recorded a series of critically acclaimed records on the Blue Note label, which were reissued on Mosaic in 2004 and gave fans hope of a comeback. Still active as a musician and writer, Reece has recorded over the years with Hank Mobley, Wynton Kelly, Paul Chambers, Ronnie Scott, Phil Seaman, Victor Feldman, Tubby Hayes, Paris Reunion Band, Clifford Jordan’s Big Band, tenor saxophonist Dexter Gordon, fellow trumpeter Ted Curson, pianist Duke Jordan, long-time Sun Ra alumni saxophonist John Gilmore, and drummers Philly Joe Jones and Art Taylor.

Reece wrote the music for the 1958 Ealing Studios film Nowhere to Go.


As leader[edit]

Blue Note


  • Mosaic Select: Dizzy Reece (MS-011) - compiles Blues in Trinity (1958), Star Bright (1959), Soundin' Off (1960), and Comin' On! (1960).

As sideman[edit]

With Clifford Jordan

  • Inward Fire (Muse, 1978)
  • Play What You Feel (1990)
  • Down Through The Years (Milestone, 1991)

External links[edit]