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Wednesday, July 28, 1999 Published at 09:49 GMT 10:49 UK


Entertainment

Jazz trumpeter Edison dies

Harry Edison: Gained his nickname from his soft trumpet sound

Harry "Sweets" Edison, the legendary jazz trumpeter who accompanied singers such as Frank Sinatra, Ella Fitzgerald and Billie Holiday, has died aged 83.

Edison was born in Columbus, Ohio in 1915 and joined the Count Basie Orchestra when he was just 18.

He was dubbed "Sweets" by Basie saxophonist Lester Young, because of his distinctive soft trumpet sound.

By the time the orchestra broke up in 1950, Edison had established a reputation as a master trumpet accompanist and was in demand for recording sessions with major singers of the time.

He also worked with Benny Carter recording film sound tracks and made an appearance in the Norman Granz film, Jammin' the Blues, in 1944.

By the late 1950s he had moved to Los Angeles and was recording his own albums, notably Sweets For The Sweet Taste Of Love.

Honoured in the 1990s

Over the years he played with his own quintet and also most of the famous big bands, including those of Buddy Rich, Quincy Jones, Louis Bellson, Henry Mancini and Nelson Riddle.

He went on to teach music seminars at Yale University, Connecticut, for the Duke Ellington Fellowship and in 1991 was honoured with a National Endowment for the Arts Award.

Edison returned to Columbus in December 1998 because of his health, according to his daughter Helena.

But, she added, he continued to perform until last month.



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