Donald Byrd (Trumpet)
Born: 9th December 1932, Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
Died: 4th February 2013, Dover, Delaware
Donaldson Toussaint L'Ouverture Byrd II was an American jazz and rhythm & blues trumpeter and vocalist. A sideman for many other jazz musicians of his generation, Byrd was one of the few hard bop musicians who successfully explored funk and soul while remaining a jazz artist. As a bandleader, Byrd was an influence on the early career of Herbie Hancock.
Further Reading: Donald Byrd
An unearthed live recording of Donald Byrd at the Montreux Jazz Festival in 1973 showcases the trumpeter and his band of young mentees shortly after the release of his funk-fusion classic Black Byrd.
We delve into the vast catalogue of the prolific trumpeter, picking out some of our favourites from his early bebop beginnings with the Jazz Messengers to later jazz-funk experiments.