|Tags:||jazz saxophone bebop don byas|
|Decades:||1950s 1960s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s|
Carlos Wesley Byas, 21 October 1912, Muskogee, Oklahoma, USA, d. 24 August 1972, Amsterdam, the Netherlands. In his teens, Byas played alto saxophone with the Midwest bands of Bennie Moten, Terrence Holder and Walter Page, but switched to tenor in the early 30s while working on the west coast. He played in Lionel Hamptons band at the Paradise Club in Los Angeles and, when Hampton joined Benny Goodman, Byas moved restlessly through the bands of Eddie Barefield, Buck Clayton, Don Redman, Benny Carter, Lucky Millinder and many others. In 1941 he succeeded Lester Young in the Count Basie band. In 1943 Byas quit Basie and began playing with small groups in clubs, mostly in New York, where his musical associates were emergent beboppers such as Dizzy Gillespie and Charlie Parker. Byas had known Parker as a young teenager and the two friends would jam together, with Byas claiming later that Parker had been his pupil (Parker always denied this and the two men almost...