December 18, 1907|
Emporia, Virginia, U.S.
|Died||August 14, 2009
New York City
Lawrence Lucie (December 18, 1907 – August 14, 2009) was an American jazz guitarist.
Lucie was born in Emporia, Virginia. When he was eight years old, he was learning mandolin, violin, and banjo. He moved to New York City in 1927 and attended the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music to study banjo. He studied guitar at Paramount Music Studios, and guitar became his primary instrument.
Lucie's professional career began as a temporary substitute for Fred Guy in the Duke Ellington Orchestra in 1931. He spent the next two years playing guitar for Benny Carter, followed by Fletcher Henderson, the Mills Blue Rhythm Band, Lucky Millinder, Coleman Hawkins in 1940, and Louis Armstrong until 1944, recording with all of them except Ellington. He can also be found on record with Red Allen, Putney Dandridge, Billie Holiday, Spike Hughes, Jelly Roll Morton, Big Joe Turner, and Teddy Wilson.
Lucie served in the U.S. Army, then became a member of small groups in contrast to his big band years, and worked often as a studio musician. He spent his career as a rhythm guitarist, seldom taking solos until the 1970s, when he founded Toy Records to issue music performed by him and his wife, Nora Lee King. In the 1980s and 1990s he played in concerts with Panama Francis.
For thirty years, he taught at Borough of Manhattan Community College until 2004. He played solo guitar in clubs until he was 99-years-old. In 2009, his death at the age of 101 ended a career that lasted over seventy-five years. He was the last musician to have recorded with Jelly Roll Morton.
- Cool and Warm Guitar (Toy, 1975)
- Sophisticated Lady/After Sundown (Toy, 1977)
- This Is It... The Innovator (Toy, 1978)
- Mixed Emotions (Toy, 1979)
- It Was Good...It is Good (Toy, 1982)
- 1956 Mr. Jelly Roll Jelly Roll Morton
- 1987 The Year of the Rabbit, Bobby Watson
- 1990 Under the Harlem Moon, Fletcher Henderson
- 1991 Little Jazz, Roy Eldridge
- 1992 Louis & Luis: Louis Armstrong and Luis Russell 1929–1941, Louis Armstrong
- 1992 The Henry Allen Collection Vol. 2 (1932–1935), Red Allen
- 1993 1936–1937, Mills Blue Rhythm Band
- 1994 Big, Bad & Blue: The Big Joe Turner Anthology, Big Joe Turner
- 1994 His Piano and His Orchestra, Teddy Wilson
- 2000 The Body and Soul of the Saxophone, Coleman Hawkins
- 2004 The Music Master, Benny Carter
- 2007 Lady Day: The Master Takes and Singles, Billie Holiday
- 2007 Pre-War Classic Sides, Sidney Bechet
- Yanow, Scott (2013). The Great Jazz Guitarists. San Francisco: Backbeat. p. 127. ISBN 978-1-61713-023-6.
- Keepnews, Peter (17 August 2009). "Lawrence Lucie, Guitarist With Jelly Roll Morton, Dies at 101". The New York Times. Retrieved 6 August 2017.
- "Lawrence Lucie | Album Discography | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 August 2017.
- "Lawrence Lucie | Credits | AllMusic". AllMusic. Retrieved 6 August 2017.
- Eligon, John (December 19, 2007). "Living to 100, and Looking Back on a Legacy of New York Jazz". The New York Times. Retrieved March 2, 2008.
- Lawrence "Larry" Lucie papers, 1927–2004 Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, The New York Public Library.