Clifford Brown, trumpeter

Clifford Brown

October 30, 1930, Wilmington ~ June 26, 1956, Bedford, PA

“When I met Clifford, I was a music snob. I was writing my thesis in which I was trying to prove that jazz was not a form of art. Clifford and I debated the subject often. Can you believe I actually told Clifford Brown that he could not play? I even strongly recommended that he stick to ballads and the Rafael Méndez songs that he used to practice breathing and fingering. Clifford was patient with me but stuck to his belief in the music. In order to break the stalemate, I decided to take him to visit my music (classical of course) teacher. I was sure he could convince Clifford that the fast paced, dissonant racket was not music. When my teacher answered the door, he said, “Is this who I think it is?” He hugged Clifford and took him inside. I was left standing on the porch… crushed!! When I went inside, I asked my teacher if he knew of Clifford and what he thought of his playing. His answer was “This man is a musical genius! You don’t understand the complexity of this music. Your music is formal, structured, this music is pure soul, free flowing.” ~ La Rue Brown Watson ~ Clifford Brown Jazz Foundation: Clifford Brown ~ retrieved April 20, 2014 © Clifford Brown Jazz Foundation

Continued right after these…

Honoring musicians. Celebrating birthdays. Remembering death days.

October 30, 2004 ~ Billboard Hot 100 ~ #3 (4) Destiny's Child, Lose My Breath ~ #2 (1) Ciara featuring Petey Pablo, Goodies ~ #1 (2) Usher & Alicia Keys, My Boo


Clifford Brown's death in a car accident at the age of 25 was one of the great tragedies in jazz history. Already ranking with Dizzy Gillespie and Miles Davis as one of the top trumpeters in jazz, Brownie was still improving in 1956. Plus he was a clean liver and was not even driving; the up-and-coming pianist Richie Powell and his wife (who was driving) also perished in the crash. ~ Allmusic: Clifford Brown ~ retrieved April 20, 2014 © Allmusic

Clifford Brown ~ Inducted in the 1972 Downbeat Jazz Hall Of Fame (Critics' Choice).

Clifford Brown & Max Roach Quintet ~ Clifford Brown & Max Roach (1954) ~ Ranked #50 New Yorker 100 Essential Jazz Albums in 2008.

All text snippets containing a hyperlink copyrighted by the original website.
Views expressed by musicians, music critics or journalists do not necessarily represent ours.
concept & design © 2020 Make Today Rock