|Tags:||jazz trumpet swing bandleader cootie|
|Decades:||1950s 1960s 1980s 1990s 2000s|
|Links:||allmusic discogs image IMDb other databases secondhandsongs wikidata wikipedia|
Charles Melvin Williams, 10 July 1911, Mobile, Alabama, USA, d. 15 September 1985, New York City, New York, USA. A self-taught trumpeter, Williams first played professionally in the mid-20s, when he was barely into his teens, appearing in the band run by the family of Lester Young. He later played in several New York bands, including those led by Chick Webb and Fletcher Henderson. In 1929 he replaced Bubber Miley in Duke Ellingtons orchestra, remaining there for 11 years. During this stint he made a number of records with other leaders, notably Lionel Hampton and Teddy Wilson (on some of whose sessions he accompanied Billie Holiday). He also led the Rug Cutters, one of the many small groups drawn from within the Ellington band. In 1940 Williams left Ellington and was briefly with Benny Goodman before forming his own big band. In later years, asked about his drinking habits, Williams remarked that he had not been a drinker until he had his own band. Given that...