Bolden, Buddy

Bolden, (Charles) Buddy

(1877–1931) jazz musician; born in New Orleans, La. Subject of myth and fable as the legendary originator of jazz and the "first jazz trumpeter," all that is certain of Bolden's musical career is that he was immensely popular in turn-of-the-20th-century New Orleans, played the cornet, and led bands. He may have contributed toward standardizing the New Orleans jazz ensemble and repertoire; no recordings remain of his work. He was institutionalized in the Jackson Mental Institute from 1907 until the end of his life.
The Cambridge Dictionary of American Biography, by John S. Bowman. Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1995. Reproduced with permission.