Joe Comfort

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Joe Comfort (July 18, 1917 – October 29, 1988) was an American jazz double bassist


His mother was born in Mississippi and played the organ during black and white silent movies. His father taught music at Alcorn State University and made sure all his children could read music. His brother George was a singer, a music teacher, and actor who performed with Dorothy Dandridge in Porgy and Bess.

A native of Los Angeles, Joe Comfort was taught trombone first by his father. He was self-taught on double bass. In the 1940s he was a bass player in the Lionel Hampton band and worked with Nat King Cole into the 1950s. He worked separately with Cole's guitarist, Oscar Moore. Beginning in the 1950s, he was a studio musician who recorded soundtracks and pop music with Nelson Riddle.[1]

He was a sideman in the 1941 Fred Astaire movie You'll Never Get Rich. He is featured on a "March Milastaire (A-Stairable Rag)", a Porter song that contrasts march and jazz rhythm. Comfort played at many night clubs in Los Angeles. He died in Los Angeles.

Charles Mingus, in his autobiography Beneath the Underdog, wrote that when he was a child in the Watts section of Los Angeles, Joe Comfort taught him how to play double bass. Joe's wife, Mattie, was the inspiration for Duke Ellington's "Satin Doll".


As sideman[edit]

With Rosemary Clooney

With Buddy Collette

With Ella Fitzgerald

With Gerald Wiggins

  • 1953 Gerald Wiggins Trio
  • 1957 Wiggin' with Wig
  • 1961 Relax and Enjoy It

With Nancy Wilson

With others


  • 2003 Harry Edison Quartet at the Haig 1953, Harry Edison (Fresh Sound)


  1. ^ Chadbourne, Eugene. "Joe Comfort". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 November 2018.
  2. ^ "Joe Comfort | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 16 November 2018.