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Trummy Young
Birth name James Young
Also known as Trummy Young
Born January 12, 1912(1912-01-12)
Origin Savannah, Georgia, U.S.A.
Died September 10, 1984 (aged 72)
San Jose, California, U.S.A.
Genres Jazz
Occupations Trombonist
Instruments Trombone
Years active 1928–1964

James "Trummy" Young (January 12, 1912 – September 10, 1984) was a trombonist in the swing era. Although he was never really a star or a bandleader himself, he did have one hit with his version of "Margie," which he played and sang with Jimmie Lunceford's Time-Life Orchestra.[1]


Growing up in Washington, Young was originally a trumpeter, but by the time he debuted in 1928, he had switched to trombone. From 1933 to 1937, Young was a member of Earl Hines' orchestra before joining Lunceford's orchestra, in which he played from 1937 to 1943. With Sy Oliver, he wrote "T'ain't What You Do (It's the Way That You Do It)", a hit for both Lunceford and Ella Fitzgerald in 1939. It has since been recorded by many other artists and was a hit song in the UK in 1982.

Young played with Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie on a Clyde Hart-led session in 1945, and with Jazz at the Philharmonic. In 1952 he joined the Louis Armstrong All-Stars and stayed a dozen years (he performed in the 1956 musical High Society). Trummy Young was a good foil for Armstrong (most memorably on their 1954 recording of "St. Louis Blues"). In 1964, Young quit the road to settle in Hawaii, occasionally emerging for jazz parties and special appearances.

According to his own life story, printed in the July 22nd, 1977 issue of the Awake! magazine published by Jehovah's Witnesses; Trummy Young became a Jehovah's Witness in 1964.

He died after a cerebral hemorrhage.[1]


  1. ^ a b New York Times obituary


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