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Definition: Blakey from Collins English Dictionary


1 Art, full name Arthur Blakey. (1919–90), US Black jazz drummer and leader of the Jazz Messengers band

Summary Article: Blakey, Art(hur) (1919–1990)
From The Hutchinson Unabridged Encyclopedia with Atlas and Weather Guide

US jazz drummer and bandleader. His dynamic, innovative style made him one of the jazz greats. He contributed to the development of bebop in the 1940s and subsequently to hard bop, and formed the Jazz Messengers in the mid-1950s, continuing to lead the band for most of his life and discovering many talented musicians.

Blakey was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and worked in New York from 1942. During the formative years of bebop, 1944–47, he was a member of a band that at various times included Charlie Parker, Dizzy Gillespie, and Miles Davis, and recorded with the pianist Thelonious Monk. Blakey visited Africa in 1947, but later denied any musical influence. Together with the pianist Horace Silver in the early 1950s, Blakey developed hard bop, a sparse, blues-based jazz style. Among those whose talents the Jazz Messengers subsequently nurtured were the saxophonist Wayne Shorter (1933– ), the pianist Keith Jarrett, and on trumpet 1980–82 Wynton Marsalis. Blakey also recorded with other bandleaders during his career, and for two years, 1970–71, was part of the Giants of Jazz, a supergroup that included Gillespie and Monk.

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