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Eldee Young

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Information about Eldee Young

Profile image of Eldee Young

Profession

Category:
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Bassist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Cajun, Asian, Soul Food
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean, Hilton Head, South Carolina
Favorite Quote:
Can you dig it?$Remember who you are and where you are.

Birthplace

Born:
1/7/1936
Birth Location:
Chicago, Illinois

Profession

Category:
MusicMakers
Occupation(s):
Bassist

Favorites

Favorite Color:
Blue
Favorite Food:
Cajun, Asian, Soul Food
Favorite Time of Year:
Fall
Favorite Vacation Spot:
Caribbean, Hilton Head, South Carolina
Favorite Quote:
Can you dig it?$Remember who you are and where you are.

Birthplace

Born:
1/7/1936
Birth Location:
Chicago
See how Eldee Young is related to other HistoryMakers

Biography

Eldee Devon Young was born on January 7, 1936, in Chicago, Illinois. His father, Walter, worked as a machinist and his mother, Beatrice, looked after the couple’s eight children. After learning the guitar from his brother at age ten, Young began playing the upright bass professionally at thirteen. He played at the After Hours Club on Sunday nights from 2:30 a.m. until dawn and then ate breakfast at home before heading to school. Young achieved great heights as a musician and could be heard on bass, cello and vocals with his own group, the Eldee Young Jazz Quartet before his passing.

Young met pianist Ramsey Lewis at McKinley High School. They played together until after graduation in 1953, when Young toured with a blues band through the South. However, he was unsatisfied and his preference for jazz and bebop led him to return to Chicago. Lewis, drummer Isaac "Redd" Holt and Young formed the Ramsey Lewis Trio. The three worked hard to improve their skills. Young went on to study at the American Conservatory of Music. The Ramsey Lewis Trio released their first album in 1956, becoming hugely successful. Their albums The In Crowd and Hang on Sloopy went gold and the group sold out Carnegie Hall. However, the pressures of fame caused friction and in 1965 Young and Holt split to form Young-Holt Unlimited. The Soulful Strut, released soon after, sold enough copies to be certified gold. Young also performed with other artists, including Dinah Washington; Dizzy Gillespie; and Oscar Brown, Jr.

Young and his wife, Barbara, have three children, Eldevon, Tyree and Marcus. Young performed for numerous television and radio programs, as well as for movies. In his later years, he spent six months a year performing in Singapore.

Young passed away on Monday, February 12, 2007 in Thailand where he was performing. Young was 71 years old.

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  • Tape: 1 Story: 1 - Slating of Eldee Young interview
  • Tape: 1 Story: 2 - Eldee Young's favorites
  • Tape: 1 Story: 3 - Eldee Young describes his family's history
  • Tape: 1 Story: 4 - Eldee Young describes the struggles of his paternal grandparents
  • Tape: 1 Story: 5 - Eldee Young describes his mother and father
  • Tape: 1 Story: 6 - Eldee Young describes the sights, sounds, and smells of Chicago, Illinois, his hometown
  • Tape: 1 Story: 7 - Eldee Young develops his passion for music while in high school
  • Tape: 1 Story: 8 - Eldee Young develops a career as a professional musician
  • Tape: 2 Story: 1 - Eldee Young balances his jazz career and his school life
  • Tape: 2 Story: 2 - Eldee Young describes his experience as a black musician on the road
  • Tape: 2 Story: 3 - Eldee Young describes a network of musicians in Chicago, Illinois
  • Tape: 3 Story: 1 - Eldee Young remembers musician Nat King Cole
  • Tape: 3 Story: 2 - Eldee Young describes the process of naming his jazz trio
  • Tape: 3 Story: 3 - Eldee Young discusses The Ramsey Lewis Trio's popular rendition of 'The In Crowd'
  • Tape: 3 Story: 4 - Eldee Young describes Chicago's exceptional jazz scene
  • Tape: 3 Story: 5 - Eldee Young discusses the intrigue of live musical performance
  • Tape: 3 Story: 6 - Eldee Young describes the breakup of The Ramsey Lewis Trio and the forming of Young-Holt Unlimited
  • Tape: 3 Story: 7 - Eldee Young describes his experiences as a father
  • Tape: 3 Story: 8 - Eldee Young describes his successes with Young-Holt Unlimited
  • Tape: 3 Story: 9 - Eldee Young remembers spending time with his heroes, jazz legends
  • Tape: 4 Story: 1 - Eldee Young meets Bill Cosby early in his comedic career
  • Tape: 4 Story: 2 - Eldee Young recognizes his alcoholism and seeks help
  • Tape: 4 Story: 3 - Eldee Young discusses passed relatives
  • Tape: 4 Story: 4 - Eldee Young considers his legacy
  • Tape: 4 Story: 5 - Eldee Young considers his music in terms of the Civil Rights Movement
  • Tape: 4 Story: 6 - Eldee Young describes his hopes for the black community
  • Tape: 4 Story: 7 - Eldee Young tours regularly in Asia
  • Tape: 4 Story: 8 - Eldee Young would like to be remembered as a happy musician
  • Tape: 5 Story: 1 - Photo - Eldee Young plays bass at a jazz festival in Singapore
  • Tape: 5 Story: 2 - Photo - Eldee Young plays the stick bass at a Singapore club
  • Tape: 5 Story: 3 - Photo - Eldee Young performs at Aubrey's, a Singapore nightclub
  • Tape: 5 Story: 4 - Photo - Eldee Young plays the blues for an audience member
  • Tape: 5 Story: 5 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with Shawn Kelly and Taurey Butler, fellow musicians
  • Tape: 5 Story: 6 - Photo - Eldee Young sits for a portrait
  • Tape: 5 Story: 7 - Photo - Eldee Young performs at the Apollo Theater with Isaac 'Redd' Holt
  • Tape: 5 Story: 8 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with his bass for a promotional photograph
  • Tape: 5 Story: 9 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with Ruben DeAndrea and Ken Chaney, members of his late seventies trio
  • Tape: 5 Story: 10 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with a cello and a bass
  • Tape: 5 Story: 11 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with Fat Girl, his valuable bass
  • Tape: 5 Story: 12 - Photo - Eldee Young plays the G string
  • Tape: 5 Story: 13 - Photo - Eldee Young takes a Star in the Spotlight photograph
  • Tape: 5 Story: 14 - Photo - Photographer Doc Anderson takes Eldee Young's photograph at the Apollo Theater
  • Tape: 5 Story: 15 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with Young-Holt Unlimited at the Apollo Theater
  • Tape: 5 Story: 16 - Photo - Eldee Young plays the bass with Young-Holt Unlimited
  • Tape: 5 Story: 17 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with the members of The Ramsey Lewis Trio
  • Tape: 5 Story: 18 - Photo - Eldee Young and Isaac 'Redd' Holt appear on 'The Mike Douglas Show'
  • Tape: 5 Story: 19 - Photo - Eldee Young spends time with celebrities at a Chicago, Illinois club
  • Tape: 5 Story: 20 - Photo - Eldee Young and his band The Ramsey Lewis Trio receive an award for most popular new group
  • Tape: 5 Story: 21 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with other well-known Chicago, Illinois musicians
  • Tape: 5 Story: 22 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with other musicians at a Singapore club
  • Tape: 5 Story: 23 - Photo - Eldee Young poses with a saxophonist at Chicago's the Back Room
  • Tape: 5 Story: 24 - Photo - Eldee Young poses in New York City with Isaac 'Redd' Holt, Ramsey Lewis, and Nancy Wilson, ca. 1963-1964
  • Tape: 5 Story: 25 - Photo - Eldee Young takes a promotional photograph with his bow in hand