Budd Johnson was a talented and valuable jazz musician for many decades, a behind-the-scenes player and writer who uplifted a countless number of sessions from the 1930s into the '80s. Johnson started off playing in Kansas City in the late '20s, including with the bands of Terrence Holder, Jesse Stone, and George E. Lee. He made his recording debut while with Louis Armstrong's big band (1932-1933), and gained attention for his work as tenor soloist and arranger during three stints with the Earl Hines Orchestra (1932-1942). One of the first tenor saxophonists to be influenced by Lester Young (although by the 1940s, he had a distinctive tone of his own), Johnson had brief stints with Gus Arnheim (1937) and the bands of Fletcher and Horace Henderson (1938) between his periods with Hines. He contributed arrangements to several big bands, ...
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