Harry Carney was a long tenured featured soloist in Duke Ellington's band and the first baritone saxophone soloist in jazz. Carney joined Duke Ellington's Orchestra when he was 17 in 1927 and remained for over 46 years, passing away in 1974 a few months after Ellington.
Born April 1910, Boston, Massachusetts, Carney began his professional musical career at the age of 13, playing clarinet and later the alto and baritone saxophone in Boston bands. Among his childhood friends were Johnny Hodges and Charlie Holmes, with whom he visited New York in 1927. Carney played at the Savoy Ballroom with Fess Williams before joining Duke Ellington, who was about to play in the young musician's home town, when this engagement was over Carney left for a tour with Ellington, who had taken on the role of guardian.
The job with Ellington lasted until Duke's death 47 years later