Artist Info

Walter Page

One of the finest bassists of the swing era, Walter Page rarely soloed but his four-to-the-bar walking behind soloists set the standard for bassists in the 1930s before the rise of Jimmy Blanton. A longtime resident of Kansas City, Page was with Bennie Moten in the early days (1918-1923) and then during 1925-1931 led the Blue Devils, Moten's main competition. Unfortunately Page's group only made two recordings and by 1931 Moten had achieved his goal of stealing most of the band's top players, including Page himself. After Moten's death in 1935, Walter Page achieved fame as part of Count Basie's unbeatable rhythm section (along with the pianist/leader, rhythm guitarist Freddie Green and drummer Jo Jones) during 1935-1942 and 1946-1949. He spent his remaining years playing with Eddie Condon's Dixieland bands and with his friends from the swing world, including Hot Lips Page, Jimmy Rushing, and various Basie alumni. Page collapsed on the way to filming The Sound of Jazz and died shortly after at the age of 57.
Scott Yanow, Rovi