Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

COUNCE, Curtis

(b 23 Jan. '26, Kansas City MO; d 31 July '63, LA) Bass, leader. Played with Wardell Gray, Shorty Rogers ('Martians Go Home' session '55); from '56 led own driving post-bop combos with excellent lineups; did film work, taught bass; died of heart attack. Fine LPs incl. Landslide (aka You Get More Bounce With Curtis Counce), Carl's Blues, Councilation '56--8 all on Contemporary with Harold Land, Carl Perkins, Frank Butler, drums (b 18 Feb. '28, KC; later worked as drug abuse counsellor; also on Miles Davis LP Seven Steps To Heaven '63, with John Coltrane '65, Teddy Edwards LP Feelin' '74 etc) Jack Sheldon on trumpet (b 30 Nov. '31, Jacksonville FL; later worked as singer, actor, comedian; returned to music and toured UK '87; album Playing For Change on Uptown '86 recorded by Rudy Van Gelder incl. Jerry Dodgion, Barry Harris, Ben Riley and Rufus Reid). Sheldon was replaced on a couple of tracks by Gerald Wilson; another Contemporary CD was called Sonority. Counce also made Exploring The Future '58 with Land, Butler, Elmo Hope, Rolf Ericson on trumpet (b 29 Aug. '27, Stockholm; d 16 June '97) on DooTone. Butler was once described by Jo Jones as the best drummer in the world; see entries for Perkins, Land and Hope. Counce's superb albums with these excellent sidemen have been largely overlooked because jazz was wrongly regarded as a minority interest by the media in the mid-'50s, and because the West Coast jazz scene was seen at the time as largely white.