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Joe Wilder

Joe Wilder

American trumpeter
The basics
Quick Facts
Intro American trumpeter
Countries United States of America
Occupations Composer Jazz musician
Gender male
Birth February 22, 1922 (Colwyn)
Death May 9, 2014 (New York City)
Joe Wilder
The details
Biography

Joseph Benjamin Wilder (February 22, 1922 – May 9, 2014) was an American jazz trumpeter, bandleader, and composer.
Wilder was awarded the Temple University Jazz Master's Hall of Fame Award in 2006. The National Endowment for the Arts honored him with its highest honor in jazz, the NEA Jazz Masters Award for 2008.

Biography

Wilder was born into a musical family led by his father Curtis, a bassist and bandleader in Philadelphia. Wilder's first performances took place on the radio program, "Parisian Tailor's Colored Kiddies of the Air." He and the other young musicians were backed up by such illustrious bands as Duke Ellington's and Louis Armstrong's that were also then playing at the Lincoln Theater. Wilder studied at the Mastbaum School of Music in Philadelphia, but turned to jazz when he felt that there was little future for an African-American classical musician. At the age of 19, Wilder joined his first touring big band, Les Hite's band.

Wilder was one of the first thousand African Americans to serve in the Marines during World War II. He worked first in Special Weapons and eventually became Assistant Bandmaster at the headquarters' band. Following the war during the 1940s and early 1950s, he played in the orchestras of Jimmie Lunceford, Herbie Fields, Sam Donahue, Lucky Millinder, Noble Sissle, Dizzy Gillespie, and finally with the Count Basie Orchestra. From 1957 to 1974, Wilder did studio work for ABC-TV, New York City, and in the pit orchestras for Broadway musicals, while building his reputation as a soloist with his albums for Savoy (1956) and Columbia (1959). His Jazz from Peter Gunn (1959), features ten songs from Henry Mancini ("Peter Gunn") television score in melodic and swinging fashion with a quartet. He was also a regular sideman with such musicians as NEA Jazz Masters Hank Jones, Gil Evans, and Benny Goodman. He became a favorite with vocalists and played for Billie Holiday, Lena Horne, Johnny Mathis, Harry Belafonte, Eileen Farrell, Tony Bennett, and many others. Wilder earned a bachelor of music degree in 1953, studying classical trumpet at the Manhattan School of Music with Joseph Alessi, where he was also principal trumpet with the school's symphony orchestra under conductor Jonel Perlea. In the 1960s, he performed on several occasions with the New York Philharmonic under Andre Kostelanetz and Pierre Boulez and played lead for the Symphony Of The New World from 1965 to 1971.

He appeared on The Cosby Show episode "Play It Again, Russell" (1986), and played the trumpet in the Malcolm X Orchestra in Spike Lee's "Malcolm X" (1992). Since 1991 he returned as a leader and recorded three albums for Evening Star. He died on May 9, 2014, in New York City, of congestive heart failure.

Discography

As leader

Year Title Genre Label
1956 Wilder N' Wilder Jazz Savoy
1956 Softly With Feeling Jazz Savoy
1959 The Pretty Sound of Joe Wilder Jazz Columbia
1959 Jazz from "Peter Gunn" Jazz Columbia
1991 Alone With Just My Dreams Jazz Evening Star
1993 No Greater Love Jazz Evening Star
2003 Among Friends Jazz Evening Star

As sideman

With Trigger Alpert

  • Trigger Happy! (Riverside, 1956)

With Count Basie

  • Dance Session (Clef, 1953)

With Louis Bellson and Gene Krupa

  • The Mighty Two (Roulette, 1963)

With Ruth Brown

  • Miss Rhythm (Atlantic, 1959)

With Al Cohn

  • Four Brass One Tenor (RCA Victor, 1955)

With Tadd Dameron

  • The Magic Touch (Riverside, 1962)

With Gil Evans

  • Into the Hot (Impulse!, 1961)

With Dizzy Gillespie

  • Gillespiana (Verve, 1960)

With Jimmy Giuffre

  • The Music Man (Atlantic, 1958)

With Johnny Hodges

  • Sandy's Gone (Verve, 1963)

With J. J. Johnson

  • J.J.! (RCA Victor, 1964)

With Etta Jones

  • From the Heart (Prestige, 1962)

With Hank Jones

  • Bluebird (Savoy, 1955)

With Quincy Jones

  • The Birth of a Band! (Mercury, 1959)

With Yusef Lateef

  • 10 Years Hence (Atlantic, 1974)
  • The Doctor is In... and Out (Atlantic, 1976)

With John Lewis

  • Odds Against Tomorrow (Soundtrack) (United Artists, 1959)
  • The Golden Striker (Atlantic, 1960)

With Mundell Lowe

  • New Music of Alec Wilder (Riverside, 1956)

With Herbie Mann

  • Salute to the Flute (Epic, 1957)

With Les McCann

  • Comment (Atlantic, 1970)
  • Another Beginning (Atlantic, 1974)

With Oliver Nelson

  • Encyclopedia of Jazz (Verve, 1966)
  • The Sound of Feeling (Verve, 1966)
  • The Spirit of '67 with Pee Wee Russell (Impulse!, 1967)

With David Newman

  • The Weapon (Atlantic, 1973)

With Houston Person

  • Broken Windows, Empty Hallways (Prestige, 1972)

With Oscar Pettiford

  • Basically Duke (Bethlehem, 1954)

With A. K. Salim

  • Flute Suite (Savoy, 1957) with Frank Wess and Herbie Mann
  • Blues Suite (Savoy, 1958)

With Shirley Scott

  • Great Scott!! (Impulse!, 1964)

With Sonny Stitt

  • What's New!!! (Roulette, 1966)

With Ernie Wilkins

  • Top Brass (Savoy, 1955)

With Donna Hightower

  • Take One (Capitol, 1959)

With others

  • Joe Newman: Hangin´ Out (Concord, 1984)
  • Benny Carter: A Gentleman and His Music (Concord, 1985)
  • Ruby Braff: Being With You (Arbirs, 1996)
  • Charlie Byrd: For Louis' (Concord, 1996)
  • Jay Jay Johnson: The Brass Orchestra (Verve, 1996)
  • The Heath Brothers: Jazz Family (Concord, 1998)

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