Sam Allen (musician)

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Sam Allen (January 30, 1909 – September 1963) was an American jazz pianist.

Allen accompanied silent films in movie palaces from the age of ten. In 1928 he moved to New York City, where he joined Herbert Cowans's band at the Rockland Palace. Before long he moved back to Ohio, where he played with Alex Jackson in 1930. Soon after this Allen joined James P. Johnson's orchestra as the second pianist, and followed this with an extended run in Teddy Hill's band, which occupied him for most of the 1930s and included tours of Europe.

Early in the 1940s Allen worked with Stuff Smith before becoming the pianist for Slim & Slam, the gig for which he was best known. He also played with Dizzy Gillespie in the 1940s. Around the end of the decade Allen moved to Washington and worked locally as a solo pianist for a time, then relocated to Oakland, California, where he played with Billie Heywood, among others.


With Dizzy Gillespie