Update: since this post was first written in 2012, a highly praised Lee Morgan documentary has been released.
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While the perpetually stylish trumpet player Lee Morgan was a consummate musician, bandleader and composer, he was nothing if not a prodigious swordsman.
It was, in fact, this libidinous inclination that brought about his premature demise at the messianic age of 33, as Morgan was shot dead by his scorned common-law wife while at a gig.
But who could blame the woman? Lee Morgan was the most stylish trumpet player after Miles Davis, and gained wide recognition during the Ivy heyday of the late ’50s and early ’60s. He’s seen above in a photo by Francis Wolff wearing rep tie and university-stripe buttondown.
With Morgan every detail was considered, and the same goes for his music as demonstrated by his hit record “Sidewinder.” a great introduction to this giant of jazz.
And here he is performing in 1961 with the Oscar Peterson Trio. — JASON MARSHALL