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Origin:
St. Louis, MO, USA
Decades:
1920-1980

Jimmy Forrest was an African American jazz musician who played tenor saxophone throughout his career. Born Jimmy Robert Forrest Jr., January 24th, 1920 in St. Louis, MO, he is famous for his first solo recording of "Night Train", with its hook and classic tenor solo. He recorded frequently as both a sideman and a bandleader. "Night Train" reached #1 on the Billboard R&B chart in March 1952, and stayed at the top for seven weeks. "Hey Mrs. Jones" (#3 R&B) and "Bolo Blues" were his other major hits. All were made for United Records, which recorded Forrest between 1951 and 1953.

Forrest was born in St. Louis, Missouri, and played alongside Fate Marable as a young man. He was with Jay McShann in 1940-42 and with Andy Kirk from 1942-48, when he joined Duke Ellington. During the early 1950s, he led his own combos. He also played with Miles Davis, in the Spring of 1952 at The Barrel Club. After his solo career, he played in small combos with Harry "Sweets" Edison and Al Grey as well as appearing with Count Basie.

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