Cultural Percussionist

Wild Bill Moore Day

Wild Bill Moore (born William M. Moore, June 13, 1918 – August 1, 1983) was an American R&B and jazz tenor saxophone player. Moore earned a modest hit on the Hot R&B charts with “We’re Gonna Rock, We’re Gonna Roll”, which also was one of the earliest rock and roll records.

Moore was born in Detroit Michigan and began playing the alto saxophone at an early age. However, prior to his musical career, he was an amateur boxer, winning Michigan’s Golden Gloves light heavyweight championship in 1937, before briefly turning professional. By the early 1940s, Moore abandoned his boxing career in favor of music, and was inspired by musicians Chu Berry and Illinois Jacquet to switch to tenor saxophone. In 1944, he made his recording debut, accompanying Christine Chatman, the wife of Memphis Slim, for Decca Records. Between 1945 and 1947, Moore was performing and recording in Los Angeles with Slim Gaillard, Jack McVea, Big Joe Turner, Dexter Gordon, and played on Helen Humes’ hit recording, “Be-Baba-Leba”

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