Salvador, Sal (Sergio)

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Salvador, Sal (Sergio)

Salvador, Sal (Sergio) , jazz guitarist; b. Monson, Mass., Nov. 21, 1925; d. Sept. 22, 1999. His father gave him his first guitar; after hearing Charlie Christian, he took up electric guitar and studied with Oscar Moore, Hy White, and Eddie Smith. He played with local groups in Springfield, Mass., then moved to N.Y. in 1949; on the recommendation of his friend Mundell Lowe, he got a job at Radio City Music Hall in 1951. Salvador then worked at NBC studios and toured with Terry Gibbs, Eddie Bert, and the Dardanelles. He returned to N.Y., formed a quartet with Lowe, and became a studio musician for Columbia, backing up Tony Bennett, Julie London, Rosemary Clooney, and Marlene Dietrich. He played with Stan Kenton (summer 1952-December 1953), led a quartet with Eddie Costa (1954), and played at the Newport Jazz festival (1958), a performance that was captured in the film, Jazz on a Summer’s Day. He formed the group Colors in Sound, then moved to the West Coast, where he played occasionally in duets with guitarist Alan Hanlon during the 1970s. Salvador led a big band during the 1980s and was also head of the guitar department at the Univ. of Bridgeport during this time. Since 1989, he has led the quintet Crystal Image.


Sal Salvador Quintet (1953); Kenton Presents Jazz: Sal Salvador (1954); Frivolous Sal (1956); Shades of Sal Salvador (1956); A Tribute to the Greats (1957); Colors in Sound (1958); Beat for This Generation (1959); Sal Salvador Quartet (1961); You Ain’t Heard Nothin Yet (1963); Music to Stop Smoking By (1964); Starfingers (1978); ]uicy Lucy (1978); Parallelogram (1978); In Our Own Sweet Way (1982); World’s Greatest Jazz Standards (1983); Plays Gerry Mulligan (1984); Sal Salvador and Crystal Image (1989); Way of the Wind (1994); Lorinda’s Kitchen (1995); Second Time Around (1996).

—Lewis Porter