Chick Webb & His Orchestra

William Henry Webb, usually known as Chick Webb (February 10, 1905 - June 16, 1939) was a jazz and swing music drummer as well as a band leader. Chick Webb was born in Baltimore, Maryland to William H. and Marie Johnson Webb. Since childhood, he suffered from tuberculosis of the spine, leaving him with short stature and a badly deformed spine. ...show more

William Henry Webb, usually known as Chick Webb (February 10, 1905 - June 16, 1939) was a jazz and swing music drummer as well as a band leader. Chick Webb was born in Baltimore, Maryland to William H. and Marie Johnson Webb. Since childhood, he suffered from tuberculosis of the spine, leaving him with short stature and a badly deformed spine.

He supported himself as a newspaper boy to save enough money to buy drums, and first played professionally at age 11. At the age of 17 he moved to New York City and by the following year, 1926, he was leading his own band in Harlem. Jazz drummer Tommy Benford said he gave Webb drum lessons when he first reached New York. He alternated between band tours and residencies at New York City clubs through the late 1920s.

In 1931, his band became the house band at the Savoy Ballroom. He became one of the best-regarded bandleaders and drummers of the new "Swing" style. Drumming legend Buddy Rich cited Webb's powerful technique and virtuoso performances as heavily influential on his own drumming, and even referred to Webb as "the daddy of them all". The Savoy often featured "Battle of the Bands" where Webb's band would compete with other top bands (such as the Benny Goodman Orchestra or the Count Basie Orchestra) from opposing bandstands. ...show less

Albums & Singles by Chick Webb & His Orchestra

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