J. C. Higginbotham
|J. C. Higginbotham|
|Born||May 11, 1906|
|Died||May 26, 1973
|Associated acts||Luis Russell, Benny Carter, Red Allen|
He was born in Atlanta, Georgia on May 11, 1906, and raised in Cincinnati. In the 1930s and 1940s he played with some of the premier swing bands, including Luis Russell's, Benny Carter's, Red Allen's, Chick Webb's, Fletcher Henderson's, and Mills Blue Rhythm Band. He also played with Louis Armstrong, who had taken over Russell's band, from 1937 to 1940. From 1947 on he chiefly led his own groups. He recorded extensively both as a sideman and as a leader. He played for a long period in the forties with his ideal partner Red Allen, and then disappeared from the scene for several years.
Higginbotham led several bands in the Fifties in Boston and Cleveland, appeared regularly at the Metropole in New York between 1956 and 1959, and led his own Dixieland band there in the Sixties. He also appeared on the DuMont series Jazz Party (1958), aired on WNTA-TV.
During the tenure with Luis Russell, on February 5, 1930, a single session was issued under the name of J.C. Higgenbotham and His Six Hicks was issued on OKeh 8772, featuring "Give Me Your Telephone Number" and "Higgenbotham Blues". Musicians included Henry Allen, Higgenbotham, Charlie Holmes, Luis Russell, Will Hognson, Pops Foster and Paul Barbarin, all member of Russell's band.
He went on his first European tour with Sammy Price, appearing in Scandinavia, and worked once again briefly in 1964 with Louis Armstrong.
Higginbotham was considered to be the most vital of the swing trombone players. His strong, raucous sound on the trombone and wild outbreaks on stage were characteristic. Along with Jimmy Harrison and Jack Teagarden, Higginbotham contributed to the acceptance of the trombone in jazz music as a melodically capable instrument.
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With Red Allen
- Red Allen, Kid Ory & Jack Teagarden at Newport (Verve, 1957)
- With Buck Clayton
- All the Cats Join In (Columbia 1956)
With Tiny Grimes
- Callin' the Blues (Prestige, 1958)