Jimmy Raney

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Jimmy Raney
Birth nameJames Elbert Raney
Born(1927-08-20)August 20, 1927
Louisville, Kentucky, U.S.
DiedMay 9, 1995(1995-05-09) (aged 67)
Louisville, Kentucky
GenresJazz, cool jazz
Years active1944–1994
LabelsPrestige, Xanadu, Criss Cross
Associated actsStan Getz, Red Norvo

James Elbert Raney (August 20, 1927 – May 9, 1995) was an American jazz guitarist born in Louisville, Kentucky,[1] known for his work from 1951 to 1952 and then from 1953 to 1954 with the Red Norvo trio (replacing Tal Farlow) and, during the same time period, with Stan Getz. In 1954 and 1955, he won the Down Beat Critics' Poll for guitar.[2] Raney worked in a variety of jazz mediums, including cool jazz, bebop, post bop, hard bop, and mainstream jazz.

In 1946, he worked for a time as guitarist with the Max Miller Quartet at Elmer's in Chicago, his first paying gig. Raney also worked in the Artie Shaw Orchestra and collaborated with Woody Herman for nine months in 1948. He also collaborated and recorded with Buddy DeFranco, Al Haig and later on with Bob Brookmeyer. In 1967 alcoholism and other professional difficulties led him to leave New York City and return to his native Louisville.[3] He resurfaced in the 1970s and also did work with his son Doug, who was also a guitarist.[4]

Raney suffered for thirty years from Ménière's disease, a degenerative condition that led to near deafness in both ears, although this did not stop him from playing. He died of heart failure in Louisville on May 10, 1995. His obituary in the New York Times called him "one of the most gifted and influential postwar jazz guitarists in the world".[5]


As leader[edit]

As sideman[edit]

With Manny Albam

With Bob Brookmeyer

With Teddy Charles

With Stan Getz

With Dave Pike

With Cal Tjader

With others

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Kernfield, Barry (Ed.): The New Grove Dictionary of Jazz. London Macmillan. 2nd ed. 2002, Vol. 3 p. 357
  2. ^ "Down Beat Critics Poll". Archived from the original on September 27, 2011.
  3. ^ "Jimmy Raney". Classic Jazz guitar. Archived from the original on October 25, 2006.
  4. ^ All Music
  5. ^ Watrous, Peter (May 16, 1995). "Jimmy Raney, 67, a Guitarist Known for Versatility in Jazz". Nytimes.com. Retrieved January 22, 2020.
  6. ^ "Jimmy Raney | Album Discography | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved January 5, 2018.

External links[edit]