Charles Ventura

About Charles Ventura

Swing and bop saxman Charlie Ventura got his start in the business in 1942 after joining Gene Krupa's band. In 1946 he formed his own big band unit, playing a commercially oriented form of bebop under the banner of Bop For The People. For most of the 1950s and '60s, he alternated between running his own nightclub, the Open House in Philadelphia, playing reunions with Krupa, and leading various band in Las Vegas. Despite battles with poor health, he continued playing throughout the '70s and into the early '80s, delighting small but approving audiences with his stomping performances. Ventura died of lung cancer in 1992.