b. Herbert Frederick Hunt, 21 September 1923, London, England, d. 25 April 1986, Weybridge, Surrey, England. A self-taught pianist, Hunt began playing jazz in the 40s. In the next decade he emerged as a significant figure in traditional jazz when, after stints with Mike Daniels and Cy Laurie, he joined Alex Welsh. Throughout the 50s and 60s, Hunt could be heard with Welsh where he was a featured soloist as well as a stalwart member of the robustly swinging rhythm section. His work with Welsh did not prevent him from accompanying visiting Americans, including recording with the four-tenor group, Tenor Of Jazz, featuring Ben Webster and Eddie ‘Lockjaw’ Davis, which toured in the late 60s. In the mid-70s Hunt left the UK, residing successively in South Africa, Denmark and Germany. At the end of the decade he returned to the UK but soon afterwards retired through ill health. Although remembered primarily for his long association with Welsh, Hunt’s eclectic, strong style made him a sought-after and thoroughly dependable player in both traditional and mainstream settings.
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