Charlie Fowlkes

born on 16/2/1916 in New York City, NY, United States

died on 9/2/1980 in Dallas, TX, United States

Charles Fowlkes

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

Charlie Fowlkes (16 February 1916 – 9 February 1980) was an American baritone saxophonist, best known for his time with Count Basie, which lasted for more than twenty-five years.

Fowlkes was born in New York, and studied alto and tenor saxophone, clarinet, and violin before settling on the baritone sax (he also played occasional flute). He spent most of his early career in New York, playing with Tiny Bradshaw (1938–1944), Lionel Hampton (1944–1948), and Arnett Cobb (1948–1951). This pattern of work was unusual for a jazz musician at the time; sidemen generally moved rapidly between bands, but Fowlkes had a sense of loyalty that kept him with bands for much longer periods.

This was nowhere more evident than in his relationship with Count Basie. After joining Basie's orchestra in 1953, Fowlkes stayed with it until his death, with a short break in the 1940s for World War II (and the occasional absence occasioned by the career of his wife, the singer Wini Brown, whose manager he was). (Note: It can't be, as someone posted, that Fowlkes joined the band in 1953, but took a "short break" in the 1940s.)

Fowlkes was the low-end foundation of the Basie band. Just listen to the Basie numbers, when Fowlkes was present, and you'll hear his low end presence---something that added importantly and richly to the Basied "sound."


With The Count Basie Orchestra

  • The Greatest!! Count Basie Plays, Joe Williams Sings Standards with Joe Williams (Verve, 1956)
  • Count Basie Swings, Joe Williams Sings with Joe Williams (Verve, 1956)
  • Basie in London (Verve, 1956)
  • Count Basie at Newport Verve, 1957)
  • E=MC2 (Roulette, 1957)
  • One O'Clock Jump with Joe Williams (Verve, 1957)
  • In Person! with Tony Bennett (Verve, 1958)
  • Chairman of the Board (Roulette, 1959)
  • Count Basie/Sarah Vaughan with Sarah Vaughan (Roulette, 1960)
  • First Time! The Count Meets the Duke with Duke Ellington (Columbia, 1961)
  • Ella and Basie! with Ella Fitzgerald (Verve, 1963)
  • Basie Land (Verve, 1964)
  • It Might as Well Be Swing with Frank Sinatra (Reprise, 1964)
  • Our Shining Hour with Sammy Davis, Jr. (Verve, 1965)
  • Sinatra at the Sands with Frank Sinatra (Reprise, 1966)
  • The Board of Directors with the Mills Brothers (Dot, 1967)
  • Basie Straight Ahead (Dot, 1968)
  • Basie Big Band (Pablo, 1975)
  • I Told You So (Pablo, 1976)
  • Live in Japan '78 (Pablo, 1978)
  • Digital III at Montreux with Ella Fitzgerald (Pablo, 1979)
  • A Classy Pair with Ella Fitzgerald (Pablo, 1979)

With Milt Jackson

  • Meet Milt Jackson (Savoy, 1955)

With Yusef Lateef

  • Part of the Search (Atlantic, 1973)

With Billy Taylor

  • My Fair Lady Loves Jazz (Impulse!, 1957)

Sources and external links

  • Ian Carr, Digby Fairweather, & Brian Priestley. Jazz: The Rough Guide. ISBN 1-85828-528-3
  • [Charles Fowlkes at All Music Guide Charlie Fowlkes] — brief biography by Eugene Chadbourne, for AllMusic.
This page was last modified 21.01.2014 20:51:11

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