The great jazz bassist Art Davis died in his Long Beach home on Sunday July 29 after suffering a heart attack. According to Nat Hentoff , Davis was the favorite bassist of John Coltrane. Davis played on Coltrane's Ole
as well as Ascension
and Africa/Brass Sessions, Vol. 1 and 2
Mr. Davis' career suffered after he unsuccessfully sued the New York Philharmonic over what he contended were its racist hiring prctices. As the calls stopped coming for jazz gigs, Davis changed career direction and earned a doctorate in psychology from NYU. He worked both as a psychologist and bassist for many years.
In an obituary by Jocelyn Stewart published in the L.A. Times, it was noted that Davis' protest against racism in the music industry led to the adoption of the blind audition" where only the musician's ability determined his or her job qualification.Davis was 73 years old.