George Roberts

George Mortimer Roberts (known as "Mr. Bass Trombone") (March 22, 1928 - September 28, 2014) was an American trombonist.

Born and raised in Des Moines, Iowa, Roberts began his career after service in the US Navy with the Ray Robbins Band, and then quit to join Gene Krupa in 1947, where he was in the same section with Urbie Green. It was Urbie's lyric tenor trombone playing that inspired George to be an "Urbie" one octave lower.

When the Krupa band broke up in 1949, George played freelance in Reno for a year before being hired into the Stan Kenton Orchestra from 1950 until 1953, to replace Bart Varsalona, who had left the band during its 1949-50 hiatus. Roberts opted to stay in Los Angeles rather than go with Kenton on his 1953 European tour, and began working as a freelance substitute. He was introduced to Nelson Riddle by Lee Gillette, one of the executives at Capitol Records who had produced Kenton recordings. George soon launched a successful studio recording career with Riddle, Don Costa, Billy May, Axel Stordahl, Gordon Jenkins, Henry Mancini, among others, in sessions with Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Ella Fitzgerald, Judy Garland, Sarah Vaughan, Nat King Cole and many others.

As a Hollywood studio musician, Roberts recorded numerous film scores with all the major studios (Jaws, King Kong, Close Encounters of the Third Kind, etc.) and served on the staff orchestras of the major radio and television networks (The Carol Burnett Show, Dinah Shore Show, Academy Awards, etc.). He eventually appeared on over 6000 recordings before retiring.

Roberts died on September 28, 2014, at the age of 86 in Fallbrook, CA, from pneumonia. He also had multiple sclerosis.

Birth and Death Data: Born March 22nd, 1928 (Des Moines), Died September 28th, 2014 (Fallbrook)

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1954 - 1963

Roles Represented in DAHR: trombone

Recordings (Results 1-25 of 36 records)

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 86791 9/3/1954 Private hell 36 Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86792 9/3/1954 Havana interlude Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86793 9/3/1954 Easy mood Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86794 9/3/1954 Daddy long legs Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86795 9/3/1954 Joshua Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86796 9/3/1954 Lilli Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86797 9/3/1954 Dance of the Lilliputian Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca 86798 9/3/1954 Private blues Leith Stevens Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 8837 12/1/1955 Around the corner Johnny Long Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 8838 12/1/1955 Boom boom (Ain't it great to be crazy) Johnny Long Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 8839 12/1/1955 The sweetest march Johnny Long Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 8840 12/1/1955 Glorious, glorious Johnny Long Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10805 10/30/1958 Jane's jump Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10806 10/30/1958 It's a lonesome old town Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10807 10/30/1958 Sound of the blues Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10808 10/30/1958 Wouldn't it be loverly Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10809 10/31/1958 Carioca Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10810 10/31/1958 Some of these days Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10811 10/31/1958 I'm getting sentimental over you Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10812 10/31/1958 Poor butterfly Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10813 11/2/1958 St. Louis blues Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10814 11/2/1958 Alfern song Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10815 11/2/1958 Lazy river Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 10816 11/2/1958 Clare's tune Jack Kane Orchestra instrumentalist, trombone  
Decca L 13157 3/23/1963 Walking through New Orleans Pete Fountain and His Mardi Gras Strutters instrumentalist, trombone  
(Results 1-25 of 36 records)

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Roberts, George," accessed April 17, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/208587.

Roberts, George. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved April 17, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/208587.

"Roberts, George." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 17 April 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/208587

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