Playing alto, tenor sax, and clarinet, Junie Cobb attained a reputation for flexibility and versatility; he played many instruments well, though he wasn't great on any one. He began as a pianist in Johnny Dunn's band as a teen, then moved from Arkansas to Chicago, leading his own band at the Club Alvadere in 1920 and 1921. He also doubled on clarinet. He subsequently played banjo with King Oliver and Jimmy Noone, and also recorded as a leader on clarinet, alto, and tenor sax. He backed vocalist Annabelle Calhoun in both the '30s and '40s, and then was a solo pianist for many club and record dates. He retired from full-time playing in 1955, but kept his hand in the scene by doing periodic dates.
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