Video: Johnny Hodges, 1969


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Johnny Hodges was an alto saxophonist who joined Duke Ellington in 1928 and developed a sweet, high-vibrato sound popularized in the 1930s by Benny Carter. He also was one of the smoothest swing improvisers on the instrument, praised by reed masters from Benny Goodman to Charlie Parker. Yesterday, I spent a few hours listening to “Rabbit," as Hodges was known, so I thought I'd share a few terrific video clips from 1969 with you... 

Here's Hodges with Ellington in Berlin in 1969 on Don't Get Around Much Anymore....

Here's Hodges with Alice Babs on Ellington's Heaven...

Here's Hodges again in Berlin in 1969, swinging on Black Butterfly...

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This story appears courtesy of JazzWax by Marc Myers.
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