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Sid Phillips (musician)

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Sid Phillips
Background information
Birth nameIsador Simon Phillips
Born(1907-06-14)14 June 1907
London, United Kingdom
Died23 May 1973(1973-05-23) (aged 65)
Chertsey, United Kingdom
LabelsVariety, Vocalion, Brunswick, Columbia

Isador Simon "Sid" Phillips (14 June 1907 – 23 May 1973) was a British jazz clarinettist, bandleader and arranger.[1]

Early life and education[edit]

Phillips was born in London, England,[1] into a Jewish family. He learned violin and piano as a child, and played reeds in his teens as a member of his brother's European band.[1] He got into the music business as a publisher and director for the Edison Bell.


In 1930, Phillips began writing arrangements for Bert Ambrose, and joined Ambrose's ensemble in 1933, remaining there until 1937.[1] Later in the 1930s, Phillips played in the United States on radio and freelance in clubs. He served in the Royal Air Force during the Second World War, then put together his own quartet in 1946 and wrote several pieces for the BBC Symphony Orchestra. He led a Dixieland jazz band of his own formation from 1949, and his sidemen variously included George Shearing, Colin Bailey, Tommy Whittle and Kenny Ball.[1]

Phillips's first recordings under his own name were made in 1928, and he continued to record as a leader into the 1970s.

In 1937 through 1938, a number of his recordings were issued in the United States, through a contract he signed with Irving Mills and issued on Mills' Variety label, as well as Vocalion, Brunswick and Columbia labels, most recordings were made in England.

In popular culture[edit]

Personal life[edit]

Phillips died in Chertsey, Surrey, in 1973, aged 65.[1]

Phillips' son, Simon, is a drummer, and started his career in his father's big band.


  1. ^ a b c d e f Colin Larkin, ed. (2002). The Virgin Encyclopedia of Fifties Music (Third ed.). Virgin Books. p. 326. ISBN 1-85227-937-0.
  • Nevil Skrimshire, "Sid Phillips". Grove Jazz online.