Russell Henderson, jazz musician, died at 91

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Dead, Russell “Russ” Henderson, born Russell Audley Ferdinand Henderson January 7, 1924 and died August 18, 2015 in Belmont, Trinidad, he was a jazz musician on the piano and the steelpan.

He is most widely recognised as one of the founding figures of the Notting Hill Carnival in London, United Kingdom.
Russ Henderson grew up in Belmont, Port-of-Spain. He founded the Russell Henderson Quartet in the 1940s and was soon well known in Trinidad. In 1951, he travelled to England to study piano tuning at the North London Polytechnic.

He settled in England and founded Britain’s first steelband combo (The Russ Henderson Steel Band) with Mervyn Constantine and Sterling Betancourt in late 1952.

They played their first gig at The Sunset Club at 50 Carnaby Street.

Henderson was vitally involved in building up Notting Hill Carnival, having played at the first Children’s Carnival there in 1964.

He was a friend of the 606 Club in London, where he performed a monthly show with his revised jazz quartet, sharing the evening with the Al Whynette Band.

In his retirement he gave numerous interviews with BBC Radio 4 and BBC Four on his Notting Hill past.

 


 

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