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Wilber Morris: 1937-2002
Wilber Morris
Bass, bandleader

Born: November 27, 1937 in Los Angeles, California
Died: August 8, 2002 in New York City, New York

Wilber Morris, bassist and bandleader

Copyright © 2002 


Wilber Morris was a highly regarded bassist and band leader. He began playing drums as a child, and attended school with Don Cherry and Billy Higgins. He took up bass while serving in the air force (1954-62), and played with Pharoah Sanders and Sonny Simmons in San Francisco on his time off.

After his discharge he returned to Los Angeles and worked with Arthur Blythe, Horace Tapscott and Charles Gayle. He moved to San Francisco in 1969-78, then to New York.

Led his own Band, Wilber Force, from 1981, and also led a trio with Charles Tyler and Dennis Charles. He formed a long-standing relationship with saxophonist David Murray in the latter's Octet. He recorded as a co-leader with Roy Campbell and Ehran Elisha in 1995, and with Rashied Ali's Prima Materia, among others. He was the organizer of the One World Ensemble.

He was the older brother of the cornetist, composer and conductor Lawrence 'Butch' Morris.

JJA members are invited to submit a full obituary or appreciation.

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With 7 reader comments, latest February 3, 2012