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Johnny Hodges

Cornelius "Johnny" Hodges (July 25, 1907 – May 11, 1970) was an American alto saxophonist, best known for solo work with Duke Ellington's big band. He played lead alto in the saxophone section for many years. Hodges was also featured on soprano saxophone, but refused to play soprano after 1946. He is considered one of the definitive alto saxophone players of the big band era (along with Benny Carter).

After beginning his career as a teenager in Boston, Hodges began to travel to New York and played with Lloyd Scott, Sidney Bechet, Luckey Roberts and Chick Webb. When Ellington wanted to expand his band in 1928, Ellington's clarinet player Barney Bigard recommended Hodges. His playing became one of the identifying voices of the Ellington orchestra. From 1951 to 1955, Hodges left the Duke to lead his own band, but returned shortly before Ellington's triumphant return to prominence – the orchestra's performance at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival.

Birth and Death Data: Born July 25th, 1906 (Cambridge), Died May 11th, 1970 (New York City)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1928 - 1959

Roles Represented in DAHR: alto saxophone, clarinet, soprano saxophone, composer, leader, saxophone, songwriter

Notes: He is not to be confused with pianist Johnnie Hardge, whose name sometimes appears as "Hodges." Not to be confused with pianist Johnnie Hardge, whose name sometimes appears as "Hodges."

Recordings (Results 151-175 of 203 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor PBS-061942 10-in. 12/2/1941 What good would it do? Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, clarinet, alto saxophone  
Victor PBS-061943 10-in. 12/2/1941 I dont know what kind of blues I got Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra ; Herb Jeffries Jazz/dance band, with male vocal solo instrumentalist, clarinet, alto saxophone  
Victor BS-070682 10-in. 1/21/1942 Perdido Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, clarinet, alto saxophone  
Victor BS-070683 10-in. 1/21/1942 The "C" jam blues Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, clarinet, alto saxophone  
Victor BS-070684 10-in. 1/21/1942 Moon mist Duke Ellington Famous Orchestra Jazz/dance band instrumentalist, alto saxophone, clarinet  
Columbia W148641 10-in. 5/28/1929 Beggars blues Sonny Greer and his Memphis Men Jazz/dance band songwriter  
Columbia [W]150586 10-in. 6/12/1930 Double check stomp Ten Black Berries Jazz/dance band songwriter  
Brunswick E29381 10-in. 3/1/1929 Rent party blues Jungle Band Jazz/dance band composer  
Decca 60201 10-in. 12/6/1935 Willow tree Mildred Bailey and her Alley Cats instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 60202 10-in. 12/6/1935 Honeysuckle rose Mildred Bailey and her Alley Cats instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 60203 10-in. 12/6/1935 Squeeze me Mildred Bailey and her Alley Cats instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 60204 10-in. 12/6/1935 Down-hearted blues Mildred Bailey and her Alley Cats instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 71939 4/5/1944 As long as I live Woody Herman Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 71940 10-in. 4/5/1944 Perdido (Lost)-1 Woody Herman Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 71941 10-in. 4/5/1944 I didn't know about you Woody Herman Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 71941[a] 4/5/1944 Blue lullaby Woody Herman Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 102957 7/23/1957 Nobody knows the trouble I've seen The Ellingtonians ; Al Hibbler instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 103169 8/27/1957 White Christmas The Ellingtonians ; Al Hibbler instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 103170 8/27/1957 How blue can you get Chubby Kemp and the Ellingtonians instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 103171 8/27/1957 Set 'em up Sara Ford and the Ellingtonians instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 105297 7/14/1958 Steppin' into swing society Mercer Ellington Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 105298 7/14/1958 Black butterfly Mercer Ellington Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 105299 7/14/1958 Got my foot in the door Mercer Ellington Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 105300 7/17/1958 Indelible Mercer Ellington Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
Decca 105301 7/17/1958 Ruint Mercer Ellington Orchestra instrumentalist, alto saxophone  
(Results 151-175 of 203 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Hodges, Johnny," accessed November 26, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103184.

Hodges, Johnny. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved November 26, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103184.

"Hodges, Johnny." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 26 November 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/103184

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