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Howard Rumsey

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Although a good enough bassist to play with Stan Kenton's big band, Howard Rumsey's main importance was as the organizer of the Lighthouse All-Stars and manager of the Lighthouse. Originally a drummer, Rumsey switched to bass while at college. He played with Vido Musso in the late '30s, and when Stan Kenton formed his first band in 1941, Rumsey became its bassist. A year later he started freelancing in the Los Angeles area. In 1949 Rumsey brought jazz into the Lighthouse in Hermosa Beach, CA. Within a few years the jam sessions featured some of the top jazz-oriented studio players in the area and the bassist was heading "the Lighthouse All-Stars," which recorded frequently for Contemporary in the 1950s, starring such players as Shorty Rogers, Jimmy Giuffre, Bob Cooper, Bud Shank, and Bill Perkins. In the 1960s, Rumsey quit playing to devote full-time to running the Lighthouse and, after he sold the establishment, for a time he ran the nearby club Concerts by the Sea. ~ Scott Yanow

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07 November 1917 in Brawley, CA

Years Active:

'50s, '60s