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Finding Aid for the Bill Green Jazz Collection, 1950-1996
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Biography
  • Scope and Content
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Bill Green Jazz Collection,
    Date (inclusive): 1950-1996
    Collection number: 196
    Creator: Bill Green
    Extent: 130 boxes (65 linear ft.)
    Repository: University of California, Los Angeles. Library. Performing Arts Special Collections
    Los Angeles, California 90095-1575
    Abstract: This collection documents the musical legacy of the saxophone player Bill Green.
    Physical location: Stored off-site at SRLF. Advance notice is required for access to the collection. Please contact the UCLA Performing Arts Special Collections for paging information.
    Language: English.

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    Copyright has not been assigned to the Performing Arts Special Collections. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to Performing Arts Special Collections Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Performing Arts Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder(s), which must also be obtained.

    Restrictions on Access

    COLLECTION STORED OFF-SITE AT SRLF: Advance notice required for access.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Virginia Green; gift; 1997.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Bill Green Jazz Collection, 196, Performing Arts Special Collections, University of California, Los Angeles.


    William Green (b. February 28, 1925; d. July 29, 1996), was a musician who was an integral part of the Los Angeles Central Avenue jazz scene, playing local clubs (Marty's; House of Rhythm; benefits at Lincoln Theater) working as an active studio musician (commercial recordings, television shows) and private and class teacher of woodwinds and ensembles. He performed on saxophone, clarinet, flute, oboe and taught other woodwinds as well.
    William Green was born in Kansas City, Kansas. He began to play alto saxophone in the 1930s, using his father's instrument. He performed with the local WPA Big Band until he was 15, where he met Louis Witworth, who was his musical mentor. The members chipped in to buy him his first clarinet. After serving in the army, he moved to Los Angeles in 1945-46 on the G.I Bill, and there joined other jazz musicians in the then-vital Central Avenue jazz scene, where he met and worked with local jazz artists such as Buddy Colette. He also attended the Los Angeles Conservatory of Music and Arts as a student (1947-1952) and then as a teacher (1952-1962). He studied and then subbed for Mitchell Lurie, recorded with artists such as Gerald Wilson, Louie Bellson, Benny Carter. He accompanied popular artists such as Tony Bennett, Nat "King" Cole, Frank Sinatra, Dionne Warwick, Nancy Wilson. Other artists that he accompanied include Gil Fuller, Ella Fitzgerald, Gene Ammons, Sonny Rollins, Lionel Hampton, Woody Herman. He taught at institutions such as the Los Angeles Conservatory, California State University, and University of Southern California. In addition, he taught solfege, music theory, and jazz musicianship to Los Angeles youth at the Candelabra Hall prior to his performances at the adjacent Marty's jazz club at 58th and Broadway.

    Scope and Content

    Jazz, classical and popular recordings, videotapes, method books, fake books, transcriptions, scores and parts, photographs, correspondence, written and printed ephemera. The materials in this collection provide insight into jazz pedagogy and tools for professional as well as student training for studio, jazz, and overall musicianship.

    Organization and Arrangement

    Arranged in the following series:
    1. General music: theory, harmony, composition, arranging
    2. Jazz theory, harmony, composition, arranging, improvisational aids
    3. Materials for classical flute
    4. Materials for jazz flute
    5. Materials for classical clarinet
    6. Materials for jazz
    7. Materials for classical saxophone
    8. Materials for jazz saxophone
    9. Pedagogical material for other instruments
    10. Concert materials for programs
    11. Transcriptions of solos
    12. Lead sheets
    13. Unpublished and published fake books
    14. Books of Chord Charts
    15. Scores and parts for ensembles
    16. Printed ephemera
    17. Sound recordings
    18. Video recordings
    19. Photographs
    Musical materials in collection originally organized by Green in 2 series: "G" for General (Western European classical) and "J" for Jazz music materials. Original series organization was as follows: G "General Instruction" G-1 Theory; G-2 Harmony; G-3 Composition; G-4 Arranging; for G-5 Flute instrumental methods, studies, etudes G-6 Clarinet; G-7 Saxophone; G-8 Other; G-9 Flute solos, duets, trios; G-10 Clarinet; G-11 Saxophone; G-12 Other instruments; G-13 Misc. Useful Information. J "Jazz instruction" J-1 Theory; J-1 Theory; J-2 Harmony; J-3 Composition; J-4 Arranging (Arrangements); J-5 Flute instrumental instruction; J-6 Clarinet; J-7 Saxophone; J-8 Other instruments; Lead Sheets - Fake Books [no letter designation]; J-9 Concert (C instruments); J-10 Bb Instruments; J-11 Eb Instruments; J-12 Bass Clef; Transcribed Jazz Solos and other improvisational aids [no letter designation]; J-13 All Instruments.
    The series order devised for this collection followed the basic logic of this former organizational system, and the original location of each item and its designation is included in the details field.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog.
    Green, William Ernest, 1925-1996--Archives.
    Composers California Los Angeles Archival resources
    Jazz musicians California Los Angeles Archival Resources
    Music Instruction and study
    Jazz Instruction and study
    Flute Studies and exercises
    Flute Studies and exercises (Jazz)
    Clarinet Studies and exercises
    Clarinet Studies and exercises (Jazz)
    Saxophone Studies and exercises
    Saxophone Studies and exercises (Jazz)