George Coleman on Playing with B.B. King

WORKING WITH MASTER BLUESMAN, B.B. KING [1:29] Now, A Jazz Moment Woke Up This Morning under ruffin: AFTER blues LEGEND and 1991 NEA National Heritage Fellow B.B. KING SAW GEORGE COLEMAN PLAY the sax, HE OFFERED THE YOUNG MAN A JOB. HE WAS JUST 17-YEARS-OLD. GEORGE COLEMAN: Because he had an alto player in the band, he wanted a tenor. So we went to the music store and he bought me a tenor. And of course I paid him, ya know? I paid notes on it. Woke Up This Morning under ruffin: THREE YEARS LATER, HE WENT ON TOUR WITH KING. 2015 NEA JAZZ MASTER, GEORGE COLEMAN. GEORGE COLEMAN: When I went on the road with him, I was 20 years old, 1955. Woke Up This Morning under up We weren’t considered jazz musicians during that time. But we really were, because we had jazz arrangements in the band. The people didn't know that before B.B. would come on, we’d have these jazz tunes that we would play and from a great arranger in Memphis during that time. Of course, the people would get, they said the natives would get restless. We’d be playin' this jazz stuff and they'd say: ‘Hey, B.B., where’s B.B.?’ It was an experience. Ya know, we had fun. Woke Up This Morning under up


Excerpt of “Woke Up This Morning” composed by Riley B. King and Jules Bihari performed by B.B. King, from the album Singin’ the Blues, used courtesy of Universal Music Group and by permission of Universal Music Publishing Group [BMI]