"We all recognized Hamp's greatness
the very first
day we went to rehearsal." --Louis
"It is difficult
to find the words to describe the deep sadness that I have today.
In our more than 50-year relationship ... Lionel Hampton was a mentor,
collaborator and friend to me. Hamp was the consummate jazz artist....
I cut my teeth writing arrangements for Lionel Hampton, and there
was no better school in the world than the Lionel Hampton Orchestra.
He taught me how to groove and how to laugh and how to hang and
how to live like a man."
-- Quincy Jones
photograph courtesy of Quincy Jones.
||" I remember once I went by the Paramount
Theater in New York, and Hamp's Big Band was playing there. I had
my horn with me and Hamp asked me to come out and play the last number,
"Flying Home." They didn't tell me that at the end, an explosion
would go off and smoke would fill the stage. I've always laughed about
that. ... Lionel was always learning, always trying something new.
He was always thinking about doing something different, musically.
...Every time on the bandstand, I would learn something just listening
to Hamp. Gates, he's something else. "
-- James Moody
" As long as I can
remember, I have known the name of Lionel Hampton. He was always
a symbol for this great art form, along with the other greats: Dizzy
Gillespie, Charlie Parker and Miles Davis, to name a few. ...I first
saw Lionel in person in the late 1970s...here was a man that had
truly been blessed, not only with the gift of playing music, but
also the ability to communicate his love for the music to so many
remember well the first time I became aware of Lionel Hampton's
genius. I was a freshman in high school and I heard his recording
with Art Tatum. ...I had never heard anything like it. Of course,
Lionel Hampton is one of the great artists and musicians of all
time, a great band leader and without question, the focal figure
on his instrument. ...Here's to you, Hamp. Thanks for all the great
- -Bill Charlap
||" I was named after Lionel,
and I wear that name proudly. My name is Lionel Frederick Cole. There
are so many accolades about Lionel and all of them are true. As long
as there's music, there will be a Lionel Hampton. "
-- Freddy Cole
Thinking about the times I was on the road with Hamp and I can assure
you one thing: when we got on that bandstand it was pure swing.
No matter how far we traveled or how tired the band was, Hamp made
you swing till you dropped. ... I remember we'd get off a 500 miles
bus trip and Hamp would call a rehearsal... Hamp just loved to play.
-- Ronnie Cuber