The brother of bassist Red Mitchell, Whitey Mitchell never achieved the fame of his sibling but he was also an excellent player. He played clarinet and tuba as a youth before settling on the bass. Whitey played with the Elinor Sherry Quartet and Shep Fields Orchestra (1951-52) before serving in the Army. Starting in 1954, Whitey freelanced in New York, playing in countless situations. Among his more important associations were Gene Krupa (1955), Tony Scott, J.J. Johnson-Kai Winding, Pete Rugolo, Charlie Ventura, Herbie Mann, Betty Roche, Oscar Pettiford's big band (1956-57), Gene Quill, Mat Mathews, Joe Puma, Johnny Richards, Peter Appleyard, Benny Goodman (1963-64) and Andre Previn. Whitey, who largely dropped out of full-time playing after 1965 and became a television producer, led an album for ABC-Paramount in 1956 and co-led a set for Metrojazz (as "the Mitchells") with Red and Blue Mitchell in 1958.
Whitey Mitchell Biography
by Scott Yanow