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Hall of Fame - Gene Ramey

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Gene Ramey (April 4, 1913 – December 8, 1984) was an American jazz double bassist.

​​​​​​​​Gene Ramey was born in Austin, TX on April 4, 1913. He played the trumpet in college, but later switched to contrabass. He moved to Kansas City in 1932 and took up the contrabass studying with Walter page. He played bass with George Corley’s Royal Aces, The Moonlight Serenaders and Terrence Holder. He became a fixture on the Kansas City swing jazz scene in the 1930’s. He also toured with the Jay McShann’s Orchestra from 1938 to 1943.

He moved to New York City in 1944 and played with Lester young, Count Basie, Ben Webster, Coleman Hawkins, Charlie Parker, Hot Lips Page, Horace Silver, Thelonious Monk ( as a member of Monk’s first trio in 1947 along with drummer Art Blakey), and Miles Davis. He transitioned into the bebop style ably but continued to ply in more swing-oriented groups. He also toured Europe with Buck Clayton and played with Muggsy Spanier, Teddy Wilson (another Austinite), Dick Wellstood, Jimmy Rushing and Eddie “Cleanhead” Vinson. He moved back to Austin Texas and occasionally playing gigs up until his death on December 8, 1984. 

Click below to view Gene's youtube performances: