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Al Cohn (Alvin Gilbert Cohn, Brooklyn, New York, November 24, 1925 – Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, February 15, 1988) was an American jazz tenor-saxophonist and arranger and composer.

Al Cohn was initially known in the 1940s for playing in Woody Herman's Second Herd as one of the Four Brothers, along with Zoot Sims, Stan Getz, and Serge Chaloff. Unlike the better known tenors Sims and Getz, Cohn contributed arrangements to the Herman band. Cohn had a reputation as a lyrical flowing soloist.
After leaving the Herman group Cohn went on to play with a variety of other musicians, but his best-known association was his long-term partnership with fellow Herman veteran tenor player Sims, beginning with the quintet they co-led in 1956. They continued to play together sporadically until the death of Sims. The high point of their recorded output can be found on You 'n' Me, a collection of standards and original compositions released on Mercury Records in 1960. The two also played on some of author Jack Kerouac's recordings. The rhythm section on their 1950s recordings included Mose Allison on piano.
In addition to his work as a jazz tenor saxophonist, Cohn was an arranger. His work included the Broadway productions of Raisin' and Sophisticated Ladies. Also, Cohn did arrangements for unreleased Linda Rondstadt recordings from the 1980s.
Cohn also appeared on stage with Elvis Presley in June, 1972, as a member of the Joe Malin Orchestra at Madison Square Garden.
Cohn's first wife was the singer Marilyn Moore. His son, Joe Cohn is a jazz guitar player.


As leader

Cohn's Tones (1950)
Cohn on the Saxophone (1956) - Dawn Records
Featuring Bob Brookmeyer (1956) - Coral Records, with trombonist Bob Brookmeyer
Play It Now (1975; Xanadu Records)
Al Cohn's America (1976; Xanadu)
No Problem (1979; Xanadu)
Nonpareil (1981; Concord Records), with Lou Levy, Monty Budwig, Jake Hanna
True Blue with Dexter Gordon (1976; Xanadu)
Silver Blue with Dexter Gordon (1976; Xanadu)
Heavy Love with Jimmy Rowles (1977; Xanadu)
Tour De Force (1981) live in Japan w/ tenor players Buddy Tate and Scott Hamilton.
Standards of Excellence (1984; Concord)
Rifftide (1987) with Rein de Graaf (piano), Koos Serierse (bass), Eric Ineke (drums) by Timeless Records

As sideman

With Trigger Alpert
Trigger Happy! (Riverside, 1956) - also released as East Coast Sounds
With Kenny Burrell
Earthy (Prestige, 1957)
With Mundell Lowe
Satan in High Heels (soundtrack) (Charlie Parker, 1961)
With Lalo Schifrin and Bob Brookmeyer
Samba Para Dos (Verve, 1963)
With Zoot Sims
From A to Z (1956)
Al and Zoot (1957)
Either Way (1960)
Blues and Haikus (1960) - Playing behind Jack Kerouac's poetry reading.
You 'n' Me (1960)
Body and Soul (1973) - With Jaki Byard on Piano, George Duvivier on Bass and Mel Lewis on Drums. Produced by Don Schlitten.
Motoring Along (1975) - With Horace Parlan on Piano, Hugo Rasmussen on Bass and Sven Erik Norregaard on Drums. Produced by Rune Ofwerman.
Either Way (1960)
Hoagy Carmichael Sessions and More
Easy as Pie: Live at the Left Bank (1968) live in Baltimore, with pianist Dave Frishberg,

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  • 24 November 1925
  • Brooklyn, New York, New York, United States Died 15 February 1988 (Aged 62)

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