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Jazz Biographies



* Baltimore, 03.11.1907, † 21.07.1990; Man's voice; Piano

Taught piano by his mother, Turner began playing professionally in his late teens. Mostly based in New York City, he worked with many leading jazz artists of the 20s, including Hilton Jefferson, June Clark, Louis Armstrong and Benny Carter. He was instrumental in introducing Art Tatum to Adelaide Hall and was himself for many years accompanist to the singer. In 1931 he visited Europe, returning there later in the decade for tours and residencies. He visited France, Turkey and Hungary, where he married a local girl. After military service in World War II, Turner played with Rex Stewart, but before the 40s were over he was back in Europe to be reunited with his wife and daughter. He visited various countries, eventually settling in France, where he remained for the rest of his life. From 1962 he was resident at the Calvados club in Paris, playing Harlem stride piano, singing, and leavening his repertoire with music for the tourists. He made occasional visits to the USA, playing at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1973 and at The Cookery in New York City.


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