|Decades:||1950s 1970s 1980s 1990s 2000s|
James Minter Knepper, 22 November 1927, Los Angeles, California, USA, d. 14 June 2003, Triadelphia, West Virginia, USA. Knepper learned to play trombone as a small child, later studying intensively. In the early 40s he played in local dance bands, playing jazz with various small groups. From the late 40s and into the early 50s he played with numerous name bands, including those led by Freddie Slack, Roy Porter, Charlie Spivak, Charlie Barnet, Woody Herman and Claude Thornhill. Later in the 50s Knepper worked extensively with Charles Mingus and also with Art Pepper and Stan Kenton. During the 60s he was with Mingus again, Benny Goodman and he also began a long-lasting if intermittent association with Gil Evans. Towards the end of the 60s he began another long-term musical relationship, this time with the Thad Jones - Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra. In the 70s he was a member of the nine-piece band led by Lee Konitz and also worked with Mingus Dynasty.