Kenny Wheeler

Kenny Wheeler (Jan. 14, 1930 — Sept. 18, 2014) was a Canadian-born/U.K.-based composer, trumpeter, and flugelhorn player who was active on the U.K. jazz scene for five decades. Between 1963 and 1975, he played on albums by Georgie Fame, John Surman, Tony Oxley, Tubby Hayes, Michael Gibbs, Alan Skidmore, Bob Downes, Norma Winstone, Anthony Reebop Kwaku Baah, Mike Westbrook, Anthony Braxton, Ian Carr’s Nucleus, and the Globe Unity Orchestra.

In 1976, Wheeler released the album Gnu High on ECM with backing by Keith Jarrett, Dave Holland, and Jack DeJohnette. The following year, he teamed with Winstone and pianist John Taylor in the chamber-jazz trio Azimuth, which issued five albums between 1977 and 1995. During the 1980s and ’90s, he released further albums on ECM and appeared on recordings by David Sylvian, Rabih Abou-Khalil, Jane Ira Bloom, Steve Coleman, and Michel Portal, among others.

Select discography:

  • Windmill Tilter – The Story of Don Quixote (1969 • Ken Wheeler and The John Dankworth Orchestra)
  • Gnu High (1976)
  • Song for Someone (1977)
  • Deer Wan (1978)
  • Around 6 (1980)
  • Double, Double You (1984)
  • Gigolo (1986 • Tiziana Simona & Kenny Wheeler)
  • Flutter By, Butterfly (1988 • Kenny Wheeler Quintet)
  • Visions (1988 • Tim Brady, Kenny Wheeler, L’Orchestre de chambre de Montréal & Wanda Kaluzny)
  • Music for Large & Small Ensembles (1990)
  • The Widow in the Window (1990 • Kenny Wheeler Quintet)

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