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Dizzy Gillespie (1917-93)

John Birks "Dizzy" Gillespie (October 21, 1917 – January 6, 1993) was an American jazz trumpeter, bandleader, singer, and composer. He was born in Cheraw, South Carolina, the youngest of nine children. Dizzy's father was a local bandleader, so instruments were made available to Dizzy. He started to play the piano at the age of 4. Together with Charlie Parker, he was a major figure in the development of bebop and modern jazz.

from wabash.edu, magazine 2002 :

The great jazz musician Dizzy Gillespie performed in the Wabash College Chapel in the fall of 1990. . . . Dizzy Gillespie died on January 6, 1993. Soon thereafter a Charlie Rose late-evening TV conversation panel featured Wynton Marsalis, Nat Hentoff. and a third person I don’t remember. What I do remember is the perfect correspondence between the Dizzy Gillespie I had photographed and the person discussed by the panel. He loved children, had an affinity for Bangladesh, ate vegetarian Chinese food, and doodled on the piano during intermission. That conversation affirmed my love for Dizzy and the Teacup: the montage of image and story was honest.

There is a reference somewhere to Gillespie staying at a health farm in Rhinebeck, NY, which happened to be vegetarian, during his drug times. However none of this confirms whether he was actually vegetarian at any time.


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