Tommy Flanagan made his professional debut at age 15, joining forces with fellow Detroit budding heavyweights Milt Jackson, Thad Jones, Elvin Jones, and Kenny Burrell, playing clubs like the Bluebird. He hit New York in 1956, his first gig being a sub job at Birdland for Bud Powell, whom he recalls as a major influence on his own early development, along with Art Tatum and Nat Cole. Mr. Flanagan's own gifts were so readily apparent that in short order he was tapped for recording dates with such jazz icons as Sonny Rollins, John Coltrane, Charles Mingus, and Miles Davis.
The artist profiles on these pages were excerpted from the Carnegie Hall Tribute program. We present them here in an effort to recognize the artists that keep the music of Lady Ella alive through their repertoire.
Ann Hampton Callaway
Harry "Sweets" Edison
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