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One of the finest trombonists to emerge during the 1950s, Jimmy Cleveland has been overlooked since moving to Los Angeles in the late '60s. He started on trombone when he was 16, and his first important job was with Lionel Hampton (1950-1953). After Hampton's European tour of 1953, Cleveland became a busy freelance musician in New York, making many recording sessions (including with Dizzy Gillespie, Gil Evans, Oliver Nelson, Oscar Pettiford, Lucky Thompson, James Moody, and Gerry Mulligan). He toured Europe with Quincy Jones in 1959-1960, and played with Thelonious Monk's 1967 octet, but otherwise stayed in New York until going to the West Coast to play with The Merv Griffin Show's band and to continue recording for Quincy Jones. Jimmy Cleveland remains one of the most technically skilled of the bop-based trombonists, and still appears on an irregular basis in Los Angeles clubs. ~ Scott Yanow