Charles Moffett Sr.

born on 6/9/1929 in Fort Worth, TX, United States

died on 14/2/1997 in New York City, NY, United States

Charles Moffett

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.
Charles Moffett

Charles Moffett (September 6, 1929February 14, 1997) was a free jazz drummer.[1]


Moffett was born in Fort Worth, Texas,[1] where he attended I.M. Terrell High School with Ornette Coleman.[2] Before switching to drums, Moffett began his musical career as a trumpeter.[2] At age 13, he played trumpet with Jimmy Witherspoon,[1][3] and later formed a band, the Jam Jivers, with fellow students Coleman and Prince Lasha.[2] After switching to drums, Moffett briefly performed with Little Richard.[3]

Moffett served in the United States Navy, after which he pursued boxing before studying music at Huston-Tillotson College in Austin.[3] Moffett married in 1953 (Coleman was best man, and performed at the wedding),[2] then began teaching music at a public school in Rosenberg, Texas[3]

In 1961, Moffett moved to New York City to work with Coleman,[3] but the saxophonist soon went into a brief retirement period.[1] Moffett worked with Sonny Rollins, appeared on Archie Shepp's album Four for Trane, and led a group that included Pharoah Sanders and Carla Bley.[1] When Coleman returned to performing in 1964, he formed a trio with Moffett and bassist David Izenzon.[1] Moffett also performed on vibraphone.

Moffett began teaching music at New York Public Schools as a way to make ends meet when Coleman made only sporadic performances.[3] Moffett taught at P.S. 58 (Carrol School) in Brooklyn and at P.S. 177 M (under the Manhattan Bridge and now defunct). He also taught at a Brooklyn High School. Moffett moved to Oakland, California, where he served as the city's music director, and was later the principal of the alternative Odyssey public school in Berkeley in the mid-1970s.[3] The title of his first solo album The Gift is a reference to his love of teaching music. His then 7-year-old son Codaryl played drums on that album.

His children are double bassist Charnett Moffett, drummer Codaryl "Cody" Moffett, vocalist Charisse Moffett, trumpeter Mondre Moffett, and saxophonist Charles Moffett, Jr.[1]


As leader

  • 1969: The Gift (Savoy) with Paul Jeffrey, Wilbur Ware, Dennis O'Toole
  • The Charles Moffett Family-Vol. 1 (LRS)
  • Moffett & Sons (Sweet Basil/Apollon)

As sideman

with Ornette Coleman

  • Town Hall 1962 (ESP Disk)
  • Chappaqua Suite (CBS)
  • An Evening With Ornette Coleman (Polydor International)
  • The Paris Concert '65 (Magnetic)
  • Live at the Tivoli '65 (Magnetic)
  • At The Golden Circle, Stockholm Volumes One and Two (Blue Note)
  • Who's Crazy? Vol. 1 & 2 (Jazz Atmosphere)
  • Lonely Woman (BAT)

with Eric Dolphy

  • Memorial Album (FM)

with Archie Shepp

  • Four for Trane (Impulse!)

with Prince Lasha

with Harold McNair

with the Charles Tyler Ensemble

  • Charles Tyler Ensemble (ESP Disk)

with the Bob Thiele Emergency

  • Head Start (Flying Dutchman)

with Frank Lowe

  • Decision in Paradise (Soul Note)
  • Bodies & Soul (CIMP)

with Ahmed Abdullah

  • Ahmed Abdullah and the Solomonic Quintet (Silkheart)

with Sonny Simmons

  • Ancient Ritual (Qwest/Reprise)
  • Transcendence (CIMP)
  • Judgement Day (CIMP)

with Keshavan Maslak

  • Blaster Master (BlackSaint)
  • Big Time (Daybreak)

with Kenny Millions

  • Brother Charles (Hum Ha)
  • Masking Tape Music (Hum Ha)


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This page was last modified 22.03.2014 15:21:04

This article uses material from the article Charles Moffett from the free encyclopedia Wikipedia and it is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License.