Hampton, Lionel Leo


Hampton, Lionel Leo
▪ 2003
“Hamp”; “King of the Vibes” 
      American musician (b. April 20, 1908, Louisville, Ky.— d. Aug. 31, 2002, New York, N.Y.), was one of the first jazz vibraphonists; he became a star during the swing era and then led bands with endless, infectious energy for over 50 years. Hampton played vibes with a percussive, swinging style that excited audiences; he also improvised lyric melodies at slower tempos and composed the popular ballad “Midnight Sun.” Most of all, Hampton was famous as a showman who entertained crowds by singing, drumming, and playing two-finger piano solos; leaping and tap dancing atop tom-toms; dressing his bands in outrageous costumes and parading them through theatres and nightclubs; and performing shows that ran past closing time. His bands were loud and raucous—“Where do you think rock ‘n' roll came from?” he quipped. A parade of top modern jazz musicians, including singers Dinah Washington, Aretha Franklin, and Betty Carter, composer-arrangers Charles Mingus and Quincy Jones, trumpeters Clifford Brown and Art Farmer, guitarist Wes Montgomery, and saxophonists Illinois Jacquet, Dexter Gordon, Johnny Griffin, and Arnett Cobb, began their careers with Hampton. He went to school in Kenosha, Wis., where a nun taught him to play drums, and in Chicago, and in the late 1920s he moved to Los Angeles, where he began playing the recently invented vibraphone and soon was leading a band. From 1936 to 1940 he made history as one of two African Americans to play in the first racially integrated concert jazz group, the Benny Goodman Quartet; during those years he also led a series of classic recordings (including “Sweethearts on Parade,” “When Lights Are Low,” and “Sunny Side of the Street”) that featured great swing musicians. Despite the decline of the big-band business, Hampton's 1940–65 big band was an ongoing success, scoring hits such as “Flying Home” and “Hamp's Boogie Woogie” and touring the world; in later decades Hampton led small and large bands, including the all-star Golden Men of Jazz in the 1990s. He campaigned and raised funds for Republican politicians such as Richard Nixon and Ronald Reagan; as a philanthropist he established scholarships and built public-housing projects in New York City and Newark, N.J. He performed annually at the Lionel Hampton Jazz Festival, a student competition supplemented by clinics and concerts at the University of Idaho, where the university's music school was named for him in 1987 and where the $60 million Lionel Hampton Center, which was to house the university's jazz festival, music school, performance facilities, and international jazz archive, was launched in 2001.

* * *


Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Hampton, Lionel — born April 20, 1908, Louisville, Ky., U.S. died Aug. 31, 2002, New York, N.Y. U.S. jazz vibraphonist, drummer, and big band leader. Hampton s first vibraphone recording, accompanying Louis Armstrong, was made in 1930. He became well known as a… …   Universalium

  • Lionel Hampton — Infobox musical artist Name = Lionel Leo Hampton Img capt = Lionel Hampton during a concert in Aachen (Germany) on May 19, 1977 Img size = Landscape = Background = solo singer Birth name = Lionel Leo Hampton Alias = Hamp , Mad Lionel Born = Birth …   Wikipedia

  • Lionel Hampton — Pour les articles homonymes, voir Hampton. Lionel Hampton …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Leo Shepherd — Leo The Whistler Shepherd was a jazz trumpet player in the big band era. He came to prominence playing in Lionel Hampton s big band in 1946.In his career Leo Shepherd pushed the commonly accepted range of the trumpet to new heights. He is noted… …   Wikipedia

  • Lionel — ist ein männlicher Vorname. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Herkunft und Bedeutung 2 Varianten 3 Bekannte Namensträger 3.1 Lionel …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Leo McGarry — À la Maison Blanche Pour les articles homonymes, voir Maison Blanche (homonymie). À la Maison Blanche Titre original The West Wing Genre Série politique Créateur(s) Aaron Sorkin Musique W.G. Snuffy …   Wikipédia en Français

  • performing arts — arts or skills that require public performance, as acting, singing, or dancing. [1945 50] * * * ▪ 2009 Introduction Music Classical.       The last vestiges of the Cold War seemed to thaw for a moment on Feb. 26, 2008, when the unfamiliar strains …   Universalium

  • Vibrafon — Vibraphon Das Vibraphon oder Vibrafon ist als Schlaginstrument eine Weiterentwicklung der Marimba. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Bauart 2 Das Vibraphon im Jazz …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Vibraphone — Vibraphon Das Vibraphon oder Vibrafon ist als Schlaginstrument eine Weiterentwicklung der Marimba. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Bauart 2 Das Vibraphon im Jazz …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Vibraphonist — Vibraphon Das Vibraphon oder Vibrafon ist als Schlaginstrument eine Weiterentwicklung der Marimba. Inhaltsverzeichnis 1 Bauart 2 Das Vibraphon im Jazz …   Deutsch Wikipedia


Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.