Sunday, 18 November 2007
Born Ronald Schatt in East London, Scott began playing in small jazz clubs at the age of sixteen. he toured with Johnny Claes, the trumpeter, from 1944 to 1945, and with Ted Heath in 1946, as well as working with Ambrose, Cab Kaye, and Tito Burns. He was involved in the short-lived musicians' co-operative Club Eleven band and club (1948–1950), with Johnny Dankworth and others, and was a member of the generation of British musicians who worked on the Cunard liner Queen Mary (intermittently 1946–c. 1950) in order to visit New York and hear the new music directly.
In 1952 Scott joined Jack Parnell's orchestra, then led his own nine-piece group and quintet featuring among others, Pete King, with whom he would later open his jazz club, Victor Feldman, Hank Shaw and Phil Seamen from 1953 to 1956. He co-led The Jazz Couriers with Tubby Hayes from 1957 to 1959, and was leader of a quartet including Stan Tracey (1960–1967).
From 1967–69, Scott was a member of The Kenny Clarke-Francy Boland Big Band which toured Europe extensively and which also featured fellow tenor players Johnny Griffin and Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis, at the same time running his own octet including John Surman and Kenny Wheeler (1968–1969), and a trio with Mike Carr on keyboards and Bobby Gien on drums (1971–1975). He then went on to lead various groups, most of which included John Critchinson on keyboards and Martin Drew on drums.
Scott was among the earliest British musicians to be influenced in his playing style by Charlie Parker and other bebop musicians. His playing was much admired on both sides of the Atlantic, Charles Mingus saying of him in 1961: "Of the white boys, Ronnie Scott gets closer to the negro blues feeling, the way Zoot Sims does."
Despite his central position in the British jazz scene, Scott recorded infrequently during the last few decades of his career. He suffered periods of depression and, while recovering slowly from surgery for tooth implants, died accidentally from a mixture of brandy and prescription sleeping tablets - at the age of sixty-nine. At the subsequent inquest into his death, the coroner's verdict was "death by misadventure". (Wikipedia)
Video Of The Victor Feldman Trio featuring Ronnie Scott ~ Summer Love