Hilton Jefferson

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Hilton Jefferson
Birth nameHilton Jefferson
Born(1903-07-30)July 30, 1903
Danbury, Connecticut, United States
DiedNovember 14, 1968(1968-11-14) (aged 65)
Instrument(s)alto saxophone

Hilton Jefferson (July 30, 1903 – November 14, 1968)[1] was an American jazz alto saxophonist born in Danbury, Connecticut, United States,[1] perhaps best known for leading the saxophone section from 1940–1949 in the Cab Calloway band.[2] Jefferson is said to have been "a soft, delicate saxophone player, with an exquisite sensibility."[3]

In 1929, Jefferson began his professional career with Claude Hopkins, and throughout the 1930s was busy working for the big bands of Chick Webb, Fletcher Henderson and McKinney's Cotton Pickers.[1] From 1952–1953, Jefferson performed with Duke Ellington, but ultimately became a bank guard to support himself with a steady income.[1] In the 1950s, he continued to perform, especially with Rex Stewart and some former members of Fletcher Henderson's Orchestra.[1]


With Dizzy Gillespie

With Rex Stewart

With others


  1. ^ a b c d e Colin Larkin, ed. (1992). The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. p. 1276. ISBN 0-85112-939-0.
  2. ^ Gillespie, Dizzy (2009) To Be, Or Not... to Bop, p. 108. U of Minnesota Press At Google Books. Retrieved 18 May 2013.
  3. ^ Panassie, Hugues (2004). The Real Jazz. p. 110. ISBN 1-4191-5028-6.

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