Grachan Moncur III
One of the first trombonists to explore free jazz, Grachan Moncur III is still best-known for his pair of innovative Blue Note albums (1963-1964) that also featured Lee Morgan and Jackie McLean on the first session and Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock on the later date. The son of bassist Grachan Moncur II, who played with the Savoy Sultans during 1937-1945, Grachan III started on trombone when he was 11. He toured with Ray Charles (1959-1962), was with the Jazztet (1962), and in 1963, played advanced jazz with Jackie McLean. Moncur toured with Sonny Rollins (1964) and played and recorded with Marion Brown, Joe Henderson, and Archie Shepp, matching up with fellow trombonist Roswell Rudd in the latter group. He also was part of the cooperative band 360 Degree Music Experience with Beaver Harris. Grachan Moncur, who has also recorded as a leader for BYG (1969) and JCOA (1974), continues to play challenging music and has been an educator. Some of his associations have been with Frank Lowe (1984-1985), Cassandra Wilson (1985), and the Paris Reunion Band. ~ Scott Yanow
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