June Clark

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b. Algeria Junius Clark, 24 March 1900, Long Branch, New Jersey, USA, d. 23 February 1963, New York City, New York, USA. Clark learned to play several instruments as a child, eventually settling on the…
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b. Algeria Junius Clark, 24 March 1900, Long Branch, New Jersey, USA, d. 23 February 1963, New York City, New York, USA. Clark learned to play several instruments as a child, eventually settling on the cornet. He became a professional musician and joined a travelling show in which James P. Johnson also played. Clark and Johnson eventually teamed up with Jimmy Harrison and the three men backed various musicians and singers, sometimes on recording sessions. In the early 20s Clark was often in New York where he played with Willie ‘The Lion’ Smith and also led his own band, which featured Benny Carter in its ranks. He continued to play with various bands, making occasional records, but by 1937 was forced into retirement through poor health. He retained his links with the music business in general, however, and the jazz world in particular, becoming road manager and/or musical adviser and assistant to artists such as Louis Armstrong and Earl ‘Fatha’ Hines. John Chilton records that Clark subsequently became road manager for the boxer Sugar Ray Robinson before poor health again intervened.