Severinsen, Doc

Severinsen, (Carl H.) Doc

(1927–  ) musician; born in Arlington, Ore. A trumpeter, he began as a sideman with Ted Fio Rito in 1945. He subsequently worked in the big bands of Charles Barnet in 1947–49, and Tommy Dorsey on and off between 1949–55. He became a staff musician at National Broadcasting Company-TV in 1954, appeared in the series, The Subject Is Jazz in 1958, and became a sideman in the Tonight Show orchestra in 1962. Between 1967 and Tonight Show host Johnny Carson's retirement in 1992, he was the orchestra's leader; he also came to assume the role of a comic foil to Carson by wearing bizarre suits and engaging in banter. During this period, he toured sporadically with his own orchestra, conducted college clinics, and appeared as a soloist with symphony and pop orchestras nationwide.