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Erroll Garner

Given Name: Erroll Louis Garner

Nickname: "The Elf"

Instrument: Piano

Occupations: Composer, Pianist

Erroll Garner was born June 15, 1921 in Pittsburgh, PA

Erroll Garner was an African American jazz pianist and composer known for his swing playing and ballads. His best-known composition, the ballad, "Misty," has become a jazz standard. He has been called "the most distinctive of all pianists. Garner began playing the piano at the age of 3. He attended George Washington High School, as did fellow pianists, Billy Strayhorn and Ahmad Jamal. Garner was a self-taught pianist and remained an "ear player" all his life. When he was 7, Garner began playing on radio station KDKA in Pittsburgh with a group called the Candy Kids. By age 11 he was playing on the Allegheny riverboats. Short of stature (5 foot 2 inches), Garner performed sitting on multiple telephone directories, except when playing in New York City, where a Manhattan phone book was sufficient.

 

Erroll Garner died January 2, 1977 at age 55 in Los Angeles, California

Cause of Death: Lung cancer

Mr. Garner is buried in Homewood Cemetery Pittsburgh, PA

V. KAY JAMES McCRIMON

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