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Reggie Workman

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Reggie Workman
Workman in 2016
Workman in 2016
Background information
Birth nameReginald Workman
Born (1937-06-26) June 26, 1937 (age 86)
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, U.S.
GenresJazz, avant-garde jazz, hard bop
Occupation(s)Musician, composer
Instrument(s)Double bass
LabelsSoul Note, Evidence, Baybridge, Prestige, Postcards, Leo, Music & Arts

Reginald "Reggie" Workman (born June 26, 1937, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania)[1] is an American avant-garde jazz and hard bop double bassist, recognized for his work with both John Coltrane and Art Blakey.


Early in his career, Workman worked in jazz groups led by Gigi Gryce,[2] Donald Byrd, Duke Jordan and Booker Little. In 1961, Workman joined the John Coltrane Quartet,[2] replacing Steve Davis. He was present for the saxophonist's Live at the Village Vanguard sessions, and also recorded with a second bassist (Art Davis) on the 1961 album, Olé Coltrane. Workman left Coltrane's group at the end of the year, following a European tour.

In 1962, Workman joined Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers[2] (replacing long-time Blakey bassist Jymie Merritt), and worked alongside Freddie Hubbard, Wayne Shorter, and Cedar Walton for most of his time in the Jazz Messengers. Workman left Blakey's group in 1964.[2]

Workman also played with James Moody, Yusef Lateef, Pharoah Sanders, Herbie Mann and Thelonious Monk.[2] He has recorded with Archie Shepp, Lee Morgan and David Murray.[1] Workman, with pianist Tommy Flanagan and drummer Joe Chambers, formed The Super Jazz Trio in 1978.[3]

As of 2016, he was[4] a professor at The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music in New York City, and was a member of the group, Trio 3, with Oliver Lake and Andrew Cyrille.

Personal life[edit]

Workman has been a resident of Montclair, New Jersey.[5][6]

Honors and awards[edit]

In 1997, Workman was named as the recipient of a Life Achievement Award by the Jazz Foundation of America and was awarded a citation of excellence by the International Association of Jazz Educators.[7] In 1999, the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation presented him with its Living Legacy Award.[8] In 2020, he received a Guggenheim Fellowship in music composition[9] and was named an NEA Jazz Master.[7]


Workman at Bach Dancing & Dynamite Society, Half Moon Bay CA 4/2/89

As leader/co-leader[edit]

With Trio Transition

With Trio 3

As sideman[edit]

With Juhani Aaltonen

  • Strings Revisited (Tum, 2002)
  • Reflections (Tum, 2004) with Andrew Cyrille
  • Prana / Live at Groovy (Leo, 1982)

With Roy Ayers

With Gary Bartz

With Art Blakey

With Hamiet Bluiett

  • Orchestra Duet and Septet (Chiaroscuro, 1977)

With The Bridgewater Brothers

  • Lightning and Thunder (Denon, 1977)
  • Generation Suite (Denon, 1978)

With Roy Brooks

  • Ethnic Expressions (Im-Hotep, 1973)
  • Live At Town Hall (Baystate, 1978)

With Marion Brown

  • Vista (Impulse!, 1975)
  • Passion Flower (Baystate, 1978)

With Donald Byrd

With Don Byron

With Steve Cohn

  • Shapes, Sounds, Theories (Cadence Jazz, 1984)
  • Bridge Over the X-Stream (Leo, 1999)

With Earl Coleman

  • Manhattan Serenade (1968)

With Johnny Coles

With Adegoke Steve Colson

  • The Untarnished Dream (Silver Sphinx, 2009)

With Alice Coltrane

With John Coltrane

With Stanley Cowell

With Marilyn Crispell

With Andrew Cyrille

With Sussan Deyhim

  • Madman of God: Divine Love Songs of the Persian Sufi Masters (Cramworld, 2000)
  • Shy Angels: Reconstruction and Mix Translation of Madman of God (Cramworld, 2002) with Bill Laswell

With Bill Dixon

With Eric Dolphy

With Booker Ervin

With Mario Escalera

  • Blue Mondays (Phoenix, 1981)

With Chris Fagan

  • Lost Bohemia (Open Minds, 1992)

With Art Farmer

With Sonny Fortune

  • Awakening (Horizon, 1975)
  • In the Spirit of John Coltrane (Shanachie, 2000)

With Hal Galper

  • Art-Work (Origin, 2008)

With Grant Green

With Gigi Gryce

With Billy Harper

With Andrew Hill

With Terumasa Hino

  • Love Nature (Canyon/Love, 1971)
  • Peace and Love (Canyon/Love, 1971)
  • A Part (Canyon/Love, 1971)
  • Double Rainbow (CBS/Sony, 1981)

With Takehiro Honda

  • Jodo (Trio, 1972)

With Freddie Hubbard

With Bobby Hutcherson

With The Jazz Composer's Orchestra

With Elvin Jones

With Clifford Jordan

With Duke Jordan

With Oliver Lake

With Yusef Lateef

With Booker Little

With Living Colour

With Herbie Mann

With Miya Masaoka

  • Monk's Japanese Folk Song (Dizim, 1997)

With Cristina Mazza

  • Where Are You? (Il Posto, 1989)

With Ken McIntyre

  • Home (SteepleChase, 1975)

With Roscoe Mitchell

With Grachan Moncur III

  • Shadows (Denon, 1977)

With James Moody

  • Running The Gamut (Scepter, 1965)

With Lee Morgan

With David Murray

With New York Art Quartet

With Dave Pike

With Sam Rivers

With Max Roach

  • Nommo (Victor, 1976)
  • Live in Tokyo (Denon, 1977)
  • The Loadstar (Horo, 1977)
  • Live in Amsterdam (Baystate, 1977)

With Charlie Rouse

  • We Paid Our Dues! (Epic, 1961)

With Hilton Ruiz

  • Fantasia (Denon, 1977)

With Pharoah Sanders

With Ellen May Shashoyan

  • Song For My Father (New Ark, 1989)

With Archie Shepp

With Wayne Shorter

With Sonny Simmons

  • American Jungle (1997)

With Heiner Stadler

With Sonny Stitt

  • Moonlight in Vermont (Denon, 1977)

With Monnette Sudler

  • Other Side of the Gemini (Hardly, 1988)

With Aki Takase

  • Clapping Music (Enja, 1995)

With Horace Tapscott

With John Tchicai and Andrew Cyrille

  • Witch's Scream (TUM, 2006)

With Charles Tolliver

With Mickey Tucker

  • Blues in Five Dimensions (SteepleChase, 1989)

With Edward Vesala

  • Heavy Life (Leo, 1980)

With Mal Waldron

With Cedar Walton

With Tyrone Washington

With Richard Williams

With Frank Wright

  • Kevin, My Dear Son (Sun, 1979)

With Attila Zoller

  • Gypsy Cry (Embryo Records, 1970)


  1. ^ a b "Reggie Workman | Biography & History". AllMusic. Retrieved August 3, 2021.
  2. ^ a b c d e Colin Larkin, ed. (1992). The Guinness Who's Who of Jazz (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. pp. 439/440. ISBN 0-85112-580-8.
  3. ^ Dryden, Ken "Tommy Flanagan's Super Jazz Trio – Condado Beach". AllMusic. Retrieved March 16, 2017.
  4. ^ "The New School > College of Performing Arts > Jazz > Faculty > Reginald Workman". newschool.edu. The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music. p. 1. Retrieved January 25, 2016.
  5. ^ Ebbels, Kelly. "Sonia Sanchez to read alongside Montclair musicians", The Montclair Times, March 21, 2013, backed up by the Internet Archive as of December 30, 2013. Accessed September 18, 2017. "A jazz-and-poetry-infused fundraising event for the Montclair Academy of Dance and Laboratory of Music (MADLOM) will bring together the poet laureate of Philadelphia, Sonia Sanchez, to read alongside jazz musicians, including former Montclair resident and John Coltrane band mate Reggie Workman at the Montclair Public Library, 50 South Fullerton Ave., this Saturday evening, March 23."
  6. ^ "The State of Jazz: Meet 40 More Jersey Greats", The Star-Ledger, September 28, 2003, backed up by the Internet Archive as of September 27, 2008. Accessed September 15, 2017. "Reggie Workman -- This bass dynamo, active in post-bop and avant-garde circles, lives in Montclair."
  7. ^ a b "Reggie Workman: Bio". National Endowment for the Arts. Retrieved January 11, 2022.
  8. ^ "Reggie Workman – 1999 Living Legacy Awardee". Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation. Retrieved January 11, 2022.
  9. ^ "Reggie Workman". John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation. Retrieved January 11, 2022.
  10. ^ "Blogger". Accounts.google.com. Retrieved August 3, 2021.

External links[edit]