Thurman Green, jazz trombonist, composer and arranger who was popular on the Southern California club circuit, has died. He was 56.
Green died June 19 in Los Angeles of undisclosed causes, his family announced this week.
In recent years, Green was most often seen working with fellow trombonist Buster Cooper and jointly fronting their own quintet.
The late jazz critic Leonard Feather praised Green in 1989 as a "strong improvising force who solos on blues." Four years later, Times critic Zan Stewart noted that Green "has a buttery tone and keen sense for the ideal note choice."
Green was known for his work on stage and in recording studios with Gerald Wilson, Harold Land, Willie Bobo, Horace Tapscott, the Capp/Pierce Juggernaut and John Carter.
He also worked with Natalie Cole, Andy Williams, Nancy Wilson and Lionel Hampton.
Green and Cooper, who started their quintet in 1988, prided themselves on delivering the kind of music that musicians call "swinging."
"That's the heart and soul of jazz," Green told The Times in 1993. "When the music is swinging, I have the same feeling I had as a kid, first listening to jazz. It gives me a vibrant outlook on life. It makes me happy. You have to maintain that childlike enthusiasm."
Born in Longview, Texas, Green moved to Los Angeles in 1958 and earned an undergraduate degree in music at Cal State Dominguez Hills and a master's degree in music from Cal State L.A. He served in the Navy as a band member.
Among Green's awards was a jazz composer's fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts.
He is survived by his wife, Gloria, and son, Thurman Green II.
Services are scheduled at 11 a.m. today at Forest Lawn Hollywood Hills. The family has asked that donations be made to the Thurman Green Memorial Fund, KLON Radio, 1250 Bellflower Blvd., Long Beach, CA 90815.