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08/31/2002 Entry: "Goodbye, Lionel"

Lionel Hampton died this morning. Lionel, the famous vibraphonist (or as he called it, vibraharpist), was famous for a few reasons. One, he was a great drummer and showman. He could use 3 pairs of sticks at the same time: 2 in his hands, 2 under his arms, and 2 in the air! He was the first to record the vibraphone on a Jazz record. He was playing drums for a Louis Armstrong session, when Louis asked him if he could play the vibes. Well, Lionel used to transcribe Louis's solos on the xylophone, so he said "Sure, I can play that." He walks over to it, and plays one of Louis's solos back to him! So, he put him on the record--the first vibraphone Jazz solo. Also, he was in the first intergrated Jazz band with Benny Goodman. He keep playing, even after a series of small strokes made it hard for him to walk and talk. He keep playing even after a fire destroyed everything in his New York apartment. And, he was a Republican!

Replies: 1 person has rocked the mic!

did you hear about the drummer we "were" having problems with
i won't get into details on this but lets just say he may make maine folk legend status for drummers.

Posted by bill @ 09/16/2002 07:15 PM EST

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