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Ronnie Scott

On 28/01/1927: Ronnie Scott was born in Aldgate, London. His birth name was Ronald Schatt. He was taught to play Tenor Saxophone by Vera Lynn's father-in-law. At the age of 16, Scott started performing in small jazz clubs.
From 1944 to 1945, Scott toured with trumpeter Johnny Claes.
In 1946 he worked with Ted Heath. He would also work with Ambrose, Cab Kaye and Tito Burns.
Between 1946 and 1950, Scott intermittently worked on the Cunard liner, Queen Mary. During which, he got the opportunity to visit New York and hear new jazz music.
During 1948 and 1950, Scott was involved with the short-lived musicians co-operative Club Eleven band and club with Johnny Dankworth and others.
In 1952, Scott joined Jack Purnell's orchestra.
From 1953 to 1956, Scott led his own nine-piece group and quintet which featured amongst others Pete King, Victor Feldman, Hank Shaw and Phil Seamen.
From 1957 to 1959, Scot co-led The Jazz Couriers with Tubby Hayes.
In 1959, Scott and Pete King opened Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club in a basement at 39 Gerrard Street, Soho, London.
From 1960 to 1967, Scott led a quintet which included Stan Tracey.
In 1965, Ronnie Scott's Jazz Club moved to 47 Frith Street, Soho, London. The old venue still continued to operate till 1967 under the name of "Old Place". Scott would regularly introduce the act and run the evenings. Artists who have played at Ronnie Scott's include Chet Baker, Ella Fitzgerald, Anita O'Day, Nina Simone, Curtis Mayfield, Dianne Reeves, Stacey Kent, Katie Melua, Jamie Cullum, Bobby Broom, Wynton Marsalis, Madeleine Peyroux, Prince, Chick Corea, Pat Metheny, George Benson and Cassandra Wilson. Jimi Hendrix made his last public performance at the club in 1970.
Scott would do session work from time to time. During the sixties, he played the solo on The Beatles' "Lady Madonna" and played on the score for "Fear Is the Key" composed by Roy Budd.
From 1967 to 1969, Scott was a member of The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band. The band also featured tenor players Johnny Griffin and Eddie 'Lockjaw' Davis. The band toured Europe extensively. At the same time, Scott had his own octet which included John Surman and Kenny Wheeler. Scott also had a trio act with Mike Carr and Bobby Gien.
Scott would lead several groups, most of them included John Critchinson on keyboards and Martin Drew on drums.
In 1981, Scott provided the tenor sax solo on Phil Collins's single "I Missed Again".
On 23/12/1996, Scott died after committing suicide by overdosing on barbiturates. He had been suffering from depression and was still slowly recovering from surgery on tooth implants.
Pete King continued to run Ronnie Scott's Jazz club for 9 years after Scott's death.
In 2005, the club was sold to theatre impresario Sally Greene.

The Music History Calendar is written by the Blues Rock artist Marshland Pete
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