Despite his talents as a singer, Jackie Paris
never made it big nor even had a regular recording career. Paris, who played guitar with Nick Jerret's band in the early '40s, was in the Army during 1944-1946 and then became known a bit in New York where he was part of the bop scene, including touring with Charlie Parker
. Paris recorded four songs in 1947 as a leader (including "Skylark") and five others in 1949 (highlighted by the first vocal version of "'Round Midnight"). He was with Lionel Hampton's orchestra during 1949-1950 but no recordings or lasting fame occurred. Paris worked fairly regularly in the 1950s (sometimes with his wife, singer Anne Marie Moss
), but remained more of a cult figure (despite being a fine jazz singer) than a legend. In addition to his early recordings (for MGM and EmArcy), Paris made records for Brunswick, Wing, East-West (1957-1958), Time (1960), Impulse! (1962), and Audiophile (1981); he also guested on sessions by Donald Byrd-Gigi Gryce and Charles Mingus
(1974's "Duke Ellington's Sound of Love") and was active into the 2000s with his last album, Intimate Jackie Paris, being released in 2001. Jackie Paris
passed away on June 17, 2004. He was 79.