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Goodman in 1942
|Birth name||Benjamin David Goodman|
|Born||May 30, 1909|
Chicago, Illinois, U.S.
|Died||June 13, 1986 (aged 77)|
New York City
Benjamin David Goodman (May 30, 1909 – June 13, 1986) was an American jazz clarinetist and bandleader known as the "King of Swing".
In the mid-1930s, Goodman led one of the most popular musical groups in the United States. His
Goodman's bands started the careers of many jazz musicians. During an era of racial segregation, he led one of the first integrated jazz groups. He performed nearly to the end of his life while exploring an interest in
Goodman, in a 1975 interview
Goodman was the ninth of twelve children born to poor Jewish emigrants from the
Money was a constant problem. On Sundays, his father took the children to free band concerts in Douglas Park, which was the first time Goodman experienced live professional performances.To give his children some skills and an appreciation for music, his father enrolled ten-year-old Goodman and two of his brothers in music lessons at the Kehelah Jacob Synagogue. During the next year Goodman joined the boys club band at
He received two years of instruction from classically trained clarinetist Franz Schoepp. When he was 17, his father was killed by a passing car after stepping off a streetcar. His father's death was "the saddest thing that ever happened in our family", Goodman said.:42 He attended Lewis Institute (