Clifford Everett Shank Jnr., 27 May 1926, Dayton, Ohio, USA. After studying and gigging on most of the reed instruments, Shank concentrated on alto saxophone, later doubling on flute and baritone saxophone. From 1947 he was resident on the west coast, playing in the big bands of Charlie Barnet, Alvino Rey, Art Mooney and Stan Kenton but making his greatest impact in small groups. With Shorty Rogers, Milt Bernhart, Bob Cooper, Art Pepper and Shelly Manne, he was one of the tightly knit group of Los Angeles-based musicians who formed the nucleus of the white west coast jazz scene of the 50s. As a member of the Lighthouse All-Stars and groups recording under the names of one or another of the leaders of the movement, Shank built a substantial reputation. He also recorded with Laurindo Almeida, beginning an association that was renewed several years later with the formation of the L.A. 4 (also featuring Ray Brown and Jeff Hamilton).
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