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Grant Green

Green was born on June 6, 1931 in St. Louis, Missouri. He first performed in a professional setting at the age of 13. His early influences were Charlie Christian and Charlie Parker; however, he played extensive R & B gigs in his home town and in East Saint Louis, IL while developing his jazz chops. His first recordings in St. Louis were with tenor saxophonist Jimmy Forrest for the Delmark label. Lou Donaldson discovered green playing in a bar in St. Louis. After touring together with Donaldson, Green arrived in New York around 1959-60. In a Down Beat interview from the early 60's, Green said “The first thing I learned to play was boogie-woogie. Then I had to do a lot of rock and roll. It's all blues, anyhow.”

Lou Donaldson introduced Green to Alfred Lion of Blue Note Records. Lion was so impressed that, rather than testing Green as a sideman, as was the usual Blue Note practice, he arranged for him to record as a bandleader first. This recording relationship was to last, with a few exceptions, throughout the 'sixties. From 1961 to 1965 Green made more Blue Note LPs as leader and sideman than anyone else. Green was named best new star in the Down Beat critics' poll, 1962. As a result, his influence spread wider than New York. Green's first session as a leader did not meet the approval of Lion and was shelved, not to be released until 2002 as First Session. Green's first issued album as a leader was Grant's First Stand. This was followed in the same year by two more Blue Note releases: Green Street and Grantstand. He often provided support to many of other great musicians on Blue Note. These included saxophonists Hank Mobley, Ike Quebec, Stanley Turrentine and Harold Vick, as well as organists Larry Young and Big John Patton.

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”Perhaps the greatest testament to his musical gift was that at a time when the guitar had fallen out of favor, suddenly, Grant Green could be heard everywhere, recording with several of the finest rhythm sections in New York.” --Ben Sidran

Photos

Albums

The Complete Joe...

Mosaic Records
2021

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Funk in France: From...

Resonance Records
2018

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Slick! – Live at...

Resonance Records
2018

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The Main Attraction

Bluemoon Records
2013

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Four Classic Albums

Bluemoon Records
2012

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Street Of Dreams

Blue Note Records
2009

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