Kenny Burrell

Born in Detroit, Michigan, Kenny Burrell was brought up in a musical family and developed a love and aptitude for the guitar from a very early age. While a student at Wayne State University he landed a job recording with Dizzy Gillespie's Sextet, the big break which led to his debut solo single 'Rose of Tangier/Ground Round'. After graduating Burrell got a job as a touring musician with Oscar Peterson and found himself in demand for sessions and side work. He worked with the likes of Billie Holiday, Lena Horne and Tony Bennett and famously recorded 'The Cats' with John Coltrane and 'Midnight Blue' with Stanley Turrentine - these have since been named as some of Burrell's best work. Swapping the studio for the classroom in 1978, he took up teaching a class he named 'Ellingtonia' at UCLA where he taught the life and works of Duke Ellington. He was promoted to Director of Jazz Studies in 1996 and remains a valued and much respected teacher well into his eighties.

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