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Paul Gonsalves

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July 12, 1920 - May 15, 1974


The "Duke Ellington Orchestra" perform in 1962 featuring Paul Gonsalves.

Paul Gonsalves was raised in New Bedford, Massachusetts first playing the guitar before adopting the tenor saxophone as his principle instrument.

Starting his career of running with the Sabby Lewis Band, Paul Gonsalves would jam with Dizzy Gillespie and Count Basie before joining the Duke's orchestra in 1950.

Gonsalves is credited for single handedly reviving Ellington's career with his incredible performance at the 1956 Newport Jazz Festival, captured for the ages on the album "Ellington at Newport."

The Ellington would affectionately nickname Gonsalves "The Strolling Violins" for his habit of leaving the bandstand and walking through the crowd during his solos.

Paul Gonsalves died in London in May of 1974 just weeks prior to Duke Ellington.

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