Archive for Henry Grimes

R.I.P. Henry Grimes (1935-2020)

Posted in Jazz with tags , , , , , on April 19, 2020 by telescoper

The Coronavirus continues to cut a swathe through a generation of great Jazz musicians. The latest sad news is of the passing of bass player Henry Grimes at the age of 84.

Henry Grimes was very active in the 50s and 60s, playing with such luminaries as Sonny Rollins and Thelonious Monk, and appearing on some classic recordings, but he dropped out of the music scene as a performer for roughly thirty years from about 1970 during which time he was virtually destitute. He returned to music around 2002 after a Jazz fan tracked him down and bought him a double bass to play – he had sold his instrument decades earlier – and remained active until his death.

When I heard last night of the death of Henry Grimes the first thing that popped into my mind was this sequence from the movie Jazz On A Summer’s Day. You can see shot of the young Henry Grimes right at the beginning in this clip of the Thelonious Monk trio playing Blue Monk at the Newport JJazz Festival in 1958; Roy Haynes was the drummer.

Rest in peace, Henry Grimes (1935-2020)