Scobey, Bob (actually, Robert Alexander Jr.)

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Scobey, Bob (actually, Robert Alexander Jr.)

Scobey, Bob (actually, Robert Alexander Jr.), jazz trumpeter; b. Tucumcari, N.Mex., Dec. 9, 1916; d. Montreal, Quebec, Canada, June 12, 1963. His family moved to Stockton, Calif, in 1918. He started playing cornet at age 9, trumpet at 14. He studied at Berklee Coll. and began playing professionally when he was 20. Scobey worked in pit bands, dance orchestras, and clubs during the 1930s. In 1938 he met Lu Watters. He co-founded Lu Watters’s Yerba Buena Band in the late 1930s, playing cornet alongside Watters until 1949, except for the period 1942–46 when he was in the Army performing with its band. During the 1950s, he led his own band in Calif.; his group made many recordings, were headliners at most traditional jazz festivals, and had a three-year residency at two clubs in Oakland. He opened his own club in Chicago in 1959 while making regular trips with his group to N.Y., Las Vegas, and San Francisco. In 1962, he toured Europe as part of the Harlem Globetrotters’ package. He continued to play dates with his band until weeks before he died of cancer. His widow, Jan, wrote his biography.


Bob Scobey’s Frisco Band, Vol. 1 (1950); Vocals by Clancy Hayes (1955); Scobey and Clancy (1955); Direct from San Francisco (1956); Swingin’ on the Golden Gate (1957); College “Classics” (1957); Rompin’ and Stompin’ (1958).


J. Goggin, B. S.: A Bibliography & Discography; J. Scobey, Jan Scobey Presents He Rambled! ’til Cancer Cut Him Down: B. S., Dixieland Jazz Musician and Bandleader, 1916–63 (Northridge, Calif., 1976).

—John Chilton , Who’s Who of Jazz/Lewis Porter