History of Jazz

Thad Jones

(1923-1986)
Postwar Big Band

Thad JonesThad Jones was a cornetist, flugelhorn player, composer and bandleader. A self-taught player, he began performing professionally at 16. He toured and recorded as a member of the Count Basie band for many years. In 1965, Jones and drummer and bandleader Mel Lewis (1929-1990) organized a band which performed regularly at the Village Vanguard in New York City. The band also toured widely and made several highly-regarded recordings. Many of Thad Jones's works have become big band classics.

Did you know?

  • Thad Jones came from a musical family. His brothers Hank and Elvin play piano and drums respectively.
  • The Thad Jones-Mel Lewis jazz orchestra is now called the Vanguard Orchestra and continues to play Monday nights at The Village Vanguard in New York City.


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