Cannonball Adderley

Buy their music on

About this artist

Cannonball Adderley's warm, inviting tone and soulful, melodic Bebop playing made him one of the most accessible and appealing saxophonists in jazz. He moved to New York from Florida in 1955 and started his own quintet. In 1957, he began playing with the Miles Davis Sextet, and was featured on the immortal Kind of Blue. Adderley's playing with the Davis quintet is pure, effortless, breezy Bebop -- a sweeter and lighter Charlie Parker. He conveys feelings of breathlessness, joy and wonder, all tinged with teasing flirtation. The Davis quintet also shows him stretching his lightning chops to their limit. By contrast, with his own group he delves deep into Blues and church music, giving birth to the style called Soul Jazz. In 1966, Adderley recorded his first and only pop hit, "Mercy, Mercy, Mercy," which brought together jazz with R&B and gained a wider audience for his music.