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JJ Johnson was born James Louis in Indianapolis on January 22 1924 At the age of nine Johnson became very interested with music thus learning the piano with a church organist He took further interest in music once he attended Crispus Attucks Senior High school playing the He started out playing the Bari saxophone being that it was the only instrument available to him After a short time he lost much interest in the saxophone and at the age of fourteen he picked up playing the trombone Johnson then played in the high school band as well as the brass marching band of the YMCA The 1920s in America was a jazz period classified as the Roaring Twenties or Jazz Age dominated by Bessie Smith and people at the top such as Duke Ellington Much of it reflected the Harlem Renaissance It was a time where jazz began to separate from its roots in ragtime and blues This new art form went through many periods of change and evolution Dixieland soon sprang up from the new jazz styles The development of jazz in Chicago came from New Orleans where after World War I many musicians left because of the new military port that had been constructed there It was during this time that the Chicago style was developed and at this point the solo became more prominent in jazz music JJ Johnson was considered to be the finest jazz trombonist of all time Johnson somehow transferred the innovative and exciting styles of Charlie Parker and Dizzy Gillespie to his own instrument He played with such speed and ease that at one time listeners thought that he was playing on a valve trombone Also when Johnson played ballad jazz pieces his sound was so full and powerful you would think he was a French horn in a symphonic orchestra I feel that Johnsons style was vital to this period and periods thereafter because it allows other
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