Jackie Paris

About Jackie Paris

Despite being touted by figures as different as Ella Fitzgerald, Charles Mingus, and even Lenny Bruce, the singer Jackie Paris seemed to be destined for cult status throughout his career. Starting in vaudeville as a child star tap dancer, Paris made the transition to jazz by the mid-'40s, touring with Lionel Hampton (the only white singer to do so), playing a highly succesful run on 52nd Street with his own trio, and even singing with Charlie Parker's quintet later in the decade. He also began to record in the '40s, and was the first singer to cut a vocal version of Thelonious Monk's "Round Midnight." But despite key record dates for Brunswick and Atlantic in the '50s, and later Impulse, his career never really got off the ground, and Paris remained relatively unknown even to jazz audiences up until his death in 2004. In 2009, a documentary TIS AUTUMN: THE SEARCH FOR JACKIE PARIS by the filmmaker Raymond De Felitta was released on DVD.

Nutley, NJ, United States
September 20, 1926
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