Dizzy Gillespie Essay

Words: 1319
Pages: 6

Dizzy Gillespie deservedly ranks amongst the most influential and innovative jazz musicians of all times. Every note played with his trumpet captivated a legion of devout followers from all different age demographics and cultural backgrounds. Only Miles Davis and Louis Armstrong can tread the waters of his talent and his ever-growing legend, which was propelled by his revolutionary style. The Bebop revolution would have been a real yawner without notable Dizzy Gillespie tracks and stunning collaborations with top artists from the time period. He played alongside great musicians like Cab Calloway, Ella Fitzgerald, Earl Hines, Duke Ellington, Billy Eckstine, Charlie Parker, Charlie Christian, Thelonious Monk, Max Roach and Coleman …show more content…
The pages of jazz history were being penned directly in front of the crowd, on a small stage, of a small club owned by former Harlem saxophonist Henry Minton (Aycock, 1997). Under the watchful eye of Teddy Hill the musical direction of the club shifted in favor of up-and-coming musical acts like Dizzy, Charlie Christian, Thelonious Monk and Kenny Clarke (Horricks, 1984). Dizzy Gillespie’s stint with the Teddy Hill band netted him $45 a week, and more importantly, his future wife Lorraine Willis (Horricks, 1984). Soon his talent landing him a spot in Cab Calloway’s band, which led to his first recording as a soloist, which included classics like Pickin’ the Cabbage, Hard Time and Bye-Bye Blues (Horricks, 1984). Dizzy spent a great deal of time trying to unravel the mystery of what exactly he was trying to play. His journey of self discovery happened at the expense of many “serious musicians,” who didn’t dare move off the beaten path. Dizzy’s erratic style of music caused a great deal of friction amongst his band mates (Davis, 13). He was getting closer to perfecting his style, but it didn’t stop people’s confusion and serious doubt of his skill. His ability to play fast and his musical flexibility helped to later forge a deep musical connection with Mad Monk and Charlie Parker’s style (Davis, 15). In 1941 the unhappy marriage of Dizzy and the Cab Calloway’s band disbanded, perhaps for the betterment of their careers. The divorce