Billy Taylor

William Taylor Sr. (April 3, 1906 – September 2, 1986) was an American jazz bassist. He was born Washington, D.C. and died in Fairfax, Virginia.

Taylor began playing tuba but later picked up bass alongside it. After moving to New York City in 1924, he played with Elmer Snowden (1925), Willie Gant and Arthur Gibbs (1926), Charlie Johnson (1927–29, 1932–33), Duke Ellington (1928), McKinney's Cotton Pickers (1929–31), Fats Waller (1934), and Fletcher Henderson. He recorded with Jelly-Roll Morton on three sessions in 1930. From 1935 to 1940 he again played with Ellington, and it is for this association that he is best known; he often played with a second bassist in the orchestra, at times Hayes Alvis or Jimmie Blanton. During that time he also recorded with Cootie Williams and Johnny Hodges. In the 1940s he played with Coleman Hawkins (1940), Red Allen (1940–41), Joe Sullivan (1942), Raymond Scott (1942–43), Cootie Williams (1944), Barney Bigard (1944–45), Benny Morton (1945), and Cozy Cole (1945). Later in the decade he played freelance in New York before moving back to Washington, D.C. in 1949. He led his own ensemble for Keynote Records in 1944.

Birth and Death Data: Born April 3rd, 1906 (Washington, D.C.), Died September 2nd, 1986 (Fairfax)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1930 - 1954

Roles Represented in DAHR: piano, string bass, leader, tuba, composer

Recordings (Results 26-50 of 123 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 70030 10-in. 12/10/1941 Harlem gin blues Ruby Smith instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 70031 10-in. 12/10/1941 My name is Jim Jack Meredith instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 70032 10-in. 12/10/1941 Match box blues Jack Meredith instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 73786 1/24/1947 Guilty Ella Fitzgerald instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 73787 1/24/1947 Sentimental journey Ella Fitzgerald instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75523 11/25/1949 The worst is yet to come Cecil Payne Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75524 11/25/1949 Angel child Cecil Payne Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75525 11/25/1949 Block buster boogie Cecil Payne Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75526 11/25/1949 Ham hocks Cecil Payne Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75721 1/18/1950 All ears Billy Taylor Trio instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75722 1/18/1950 My heart stood still Billy Taylor Trio instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75723 1/18/1950 Darn that dream Billy Taylor Trio instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 75724 1/18/1950 Double duty Billy Taylor Trio instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76662 7/19/1950 Three little words Bill Darnell instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76663 7/19/1950 Pink champagne Bill Darnell instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76664 7/19/1950 Well, oh well Bill Darnell instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76843 9/13/1950 Autumn leaves Artie Shaw Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76844 9/13/1950 White Christmas Artie Shaw Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76845 9/14/1950 Jingle bells Artie Shaw Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76846 9/14/1950 Where or when Artie Shaw Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 76847 9/14/1950 Blue again Artie Shaw Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 81092 5/25/1951 Tra-la-la Calvert Jones instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 81093 5/25/1951 Two timin' woman Calvert Jones instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 81281 7/13/1951 Castle rock Sy Oliver Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
Decca 81282 7/13/1951 Aboard the sentimental train Sy Oliver Orchestra instrumentalist, piano  
(Results 26-50 of 123 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Taylor, Billy," accessed May 8, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110259.

Taylor, Billy. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved May 8, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110259.

"Taylor, Billy." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 8 May 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/110259

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