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Art Tatum

Arthur Tatum Jr. (, October 13, 1909 – November 5, 1956) was an American jazz pianist who is widely regarded as one of the greatest ever. From early in his career, fellow musicians acclaimed Tatum's technical ability as extraordinary. Tatum also extended jazz piano's vocabulary and boundaries far beyond his initial stride influences, and established new ground through innovative use of reharmonization, voicing, and bitonality.

Tatum grew up in Toledo, Ohio, where he began playing piano professionally and had his own radio program, rebroadcast nationwide, while still in his teens. He left Toledo in 1932 and had residencies as a solo pianist at clubs in major urban centers including New York, Chicago, and Los Angeles. In that decade, he settled into a pattern he followed for most of his career – paid performances followed by long after-hours playing, all accompanied by prodigious consumption of alcohol. He was said to be more spontaneous and creative in such venues, and although the drinking did not hinder his playing, it did damage his health.

In the 1940s, Tatum led a commercially successful trio for a short time and began playing in more formal jazz concert settings, including at Norman Granz-produced Jazz at the Philharmonic events. His popularity diminished towards the end of the decade, as he continued to play in his own style, ignoring the rise of bebop. Granz recorded Tatum extensively in solo and small group formats in the mid-1950s, with the last session only two months before Tatum's death from uremia at the age of 47.

Birth and Death Data: Born October 13, 1909 (Toledo), Died November 5, 1956 (Los Angeles)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1934 - 1947

Roles Represented in DAHR: piano, celeste

= Recordings are available for online listening.
= Recordings were issued from this master. No recordings issued from other masters.

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 60 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Victor D7VB-0074 10-in. 1/20/1947 (When your heart's on fire) smoke gets in your eyes Art Tatum Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Victor D7VB-0075 10-in. 1/20/1947 Ain't misbehavin' Art Tatum Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Victor D7VB-0077 10-in. 1/20/1947 Cherokee Art Tatum Piano solo instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38387 10-in. 8/22/1934 Moonglow Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38388 10-in. 8/22/1934 I would do anything for you Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38389 10-in. 8/22/1934 When a woman loves a man Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38390 10-in. 8/22/1934 Emaline Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38391 10-in. 8/22/1934 Love me Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38392 10-in. 8/22/1934 Cocktails for two Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38426 10-in. 8/24/1934 After you've gone Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38427 10-in. 8/24/1934 Stardust Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38428 10-in. 8/24/1934 I ain't got nobody Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38429 10-in. 8/24/1934 Ill wind Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38430 10-in. 8/24/1934 The shout Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38431 10-in. 8/24/1934 Beautiful love Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 38432 10-in. 8/24/1934 Liza Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 62822 10-in. 11/29/1937 Gone with the wind Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 62823 10-in. 11/29/1937 Stormy weather Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 62824 10-in. 11/29/1937 Chloe Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 62825 10-in. 11/29/1937 The Sheik of Araby Art Tatum instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 68605 10-in. 1/21/1941 Wee baby blues Art Tatum and his Band instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 68606 10-in. 1/21/1941 Stompin' at the Savoy Art Tatum and his Band instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 68607 10-in. 1/21/1941 Last goodbye blues Art Tatum and his Band instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 68608 10-in. 1/21/1941 Battery bounce Art Tatum and his Band instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 69356 10-in. 6/13/1941 Lucille Art Tatum and his Band instrumentalist, piano  
(Results 1-25 of 60 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Tatum, Art," accessed December 5, 2023, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104444.

Tatum, Art. (2023). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved December 5, 2023, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104444.

"Tatum, Art." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2023. Web. 5 December 2023.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/104444

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