Leon Washington

Leon Diamond Washington (June 27, 1909, Jackson, Mississippi – February 19, 1973, Chicago) was an American jazz tenor saxophonist.

Born in Mississippi, Washington grew up in Chicago from the age of three. He started on clarinet before moving on to tenor saxophone, and studied under Santy Runyon. After finishing high school, he played professionally from 1926, joining Zinky Cohn's band and recording with Frankie Franko (1930) and Bernie Young & the Creolians (1931–33). He played with Carroll Dickerson from 1934-35 at the Sunset Cafe in Chicago, then played briefly with Louis Armstrong in 1935.

He played with Earl Hines in 1937, before joining Red Saunders' group, where he remained for the next 25 years, recording with him extensively in addition to occasionally releasing material under his own name. Leaving Saunders' band in 1963, he became an official at the Chicago musicians' union.

Washington died of leukemia in 1973.

Birth and Death Data: Born June 27th, 1909, Died February 19th, 1973

Date Range of DAHR Recordings: 1936

Roles Represented in DAHR: saxophone

Recordings

Company Matrix No. Size First Recording Date Title Primary Performer Description Role Audio
Decca 90784 10-in. 7/7/1936 Sweet Pease Victoria Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90785 10-in. 7/7/1936 Black snake swing (Black snake blues) Victoria Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90786 10-in. 7/7/1936 Grievin' me Dot Scott's Rhythm Dukes ; Addie "Sweet Pease" Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90787 10-in. 7/7/1936 Double dozens (You dirty no gooder) Dot Scott's Rhythm Dukes ; Addie "Sweet Pease" Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90788 10-in. 7/7/1936 You weren't true (but you're still in my heart) Dot Scott's Rhythm Dukes ; Addie "Sweet Pease" Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90789 10-in. 7/7/1936 I'll never fall in love again Victoria Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90790 10-in. 7/7/1936 T.B.'s got me blues Victoria Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  
Decca 90791 10-in. 7/7/1936 410 blues Dot Scott's Rhythm Dukes ; Addie "Sweet Pease" Spivey instrumentalist, saxophone  

Citation

Discography of American Historical Recordings, s.v. "Washington, Leon," accessed February 26, 2021, https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/350116.

Washington, Leon. (2021). In Discography of American Historical Recordings. Retrieved February 26, 2021, from https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/350116.

"Washington, Leon." Discography of American Historical Recordings. UC Santa Barbara Library, 2021. Web. 26 February 2021.

DAHR Persistent Identifier

URI: https://adp.library.ucsb.edu/names/350116

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