Trisha Shetty (Editor)

List of nicknames of jazz musicians

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Nicknames are common among jazz musicians. Nicknames and sobriquets can also sometimes become stage names, and there are several cases of performers being known almost exclusively by their nicknames as opposed to their given names. Some of the most notable nicknames and stage names are listed here.

Contents

Although the term Jazz royalty exists for "Kings" and similar royal or aristocratic nicknames, there is a wide range of other terms, many of them obscure. Where the origin of the nickname is known, this is explained at each artist's corresponding article.

A

  • Abbey: Abbey Lincoln
  • Abbie: Albert Brunies
  • Angry Man of Jazz (The): Charles Mingus
  • B

  • Babs: Babs Gonzales
  • Baby: Warren Dodds
  • Baby Sweets: Walter Perkins
  • Bags: Milt Jackson
  • Barney: Barney Bigard
  • Barney: Barney Wilen
  • Baron: Charles Mingus
  • Bean: Coleman Hawkins a.k.a. "Hawk"
  • Bear (The): Eddie Costa
  • Bear (The): Bob Hunt
  • Beaver: Beaver Harris
  • Betty Bebop: Betty Carter
  • Benny: Benny Bailey
  • Big Babe: Andrew Webb
  • Big Bill: Big Bill Bissonnette
  • Big Chief: Big Chief Russell Moore
  • Big-Eye: Louis Nelson Delisle
  • Big Jim: Jim Robinson
  • Big Joe: Big Joe Turner
  • Big Mama: Big Mama Thornton
  • Big Nick: "Big Nick" Nicholas
  • Big Sid: Sid Catlett
  • Billie: Billie Holiday a.k.a. "Lady Day"
  • Bing: Bing Crosby
  • Bird: Charlie Parker a.k.a. "Yardbird"
  • Bix: Leon Bismarck Beiderbecke, though it appears his given names were Leon Bix.
  • Blood: James "Blood" Ulmer
  • Blue: Blue Mitchell
  • Blue Lou: Lou Marini
  • Bobo: Bobo Stenson
  • Bogey: Wilton Gaynair
  • Bones: Tom Malone
  • Boogaloo Joe: Ivan "Boogaloo Joe" Jones
  • Boogaloo: James "Boogaloo" Bolden
  • Boots: Clifford Douglas
  • Boots: Boots Mussulli
  • Bootsie: Bootsie Barnes
  • Booty: Booty Wood
  • Bops Junior: Oliver Jackson
  • Bounce: George Mraz for being a Bad Czech
  • Brother: Brother Jack McDuff
  • Brother Ray: Ray Charles
  • Brownie: Clifford Brown
  • Brute (The), Frog: Ben Webster
  • Bruz: Bruz Freeman
  • Bu: Art Blakey took the name "Abdullah Ibn Buhaina" after a reported trip to Africa. Friends shortened it to "Bu"
  • Bubba: Bubba Brooks
  • Bubber: James "Bubber" Miley
  • Buck: Leroy Berry
  • Buck: Wilbur Clayton
  • Bucky: Bucky Pizzarelli
  • Bud: Bud Brisbois
  • Bud: Bud Freeman
  • Bud: Bud Powell
  • Bud: Bud Shank
  • Budd: Budd Johnson (not to be confused with Buddy Johnson)
  • Buddie: Buddie Petit
  • Buddy: Bernard Anderson a.k.a. "Step-Buddy"
  • Buddy: Buddy Banks
  • Buddy: Buddy Bolden a.k.a. "King"
  • Buddy: Buddy Catlett
  • Buddy: Buddy Childers
  • Buddy: Buddy Clark
  • Buddy: Buddy Collette
  • Buddy: Buddy DeFranco
  • Buddy: Buddy Featherstonhaugh
  • Buddy: Buddy Johnson (not to be confused with Budd Johnson)
  • Buddy: Buddy Montgomery
  • Buddy: Buddy Morrow
  • Buddy: Buddy Rich
  • Buddy: Buddy Tate
  • Buddy: Buddy Williams
  • Bumps: Robert Blackwell
  • Bunk: Bunk Johnson
  • Bunky: Bunky Green
  • Bunny: Rowland Berigan
  • Buster: Buster Bailey
  • Buster: Buster Bennett a.k.a. "Leap Frog" Bennett
  • Buster: Buster Cooper
  • Buster: Buster Smith a.k.a. "Professor"
  • Buster: Buster Williams
  • Buster: Buster Wilson
  • Butter: Quentin Jackson
  • Butch: Butch Ballard
  • Butch: Butch Morris
  • Buzzy: Buzzy Drootin
  • C

  • Cab: Cab Kaye
  • Cag: Cag Cagnolatti
  • Cake: Al "Cake" Wichard
  • Candy: Floyd "Candy" Johnson
  • Cannonball: Julian Adderley
  • Captain: Captain John Handy
  • Cat: William Alonzo Anderson
  • Cat (The): Jimmy Smith
  • Chairman of the Board: Frank Sinatra a.k.a. "Ol' Blue Eyes", "The Voice"
  • Chick: Chick Corea
  • Chick: Chick Webb
  • Chico: Alfred "Chico" Alvarez
  • Chico: Chico Freeman
  • Chico: Chico O'Farrill
  • Chink: Chink Martin
  • Chu: Leon "Chu" Berry Charlie Parker named his first son "Leon" after Chu
  • Chubby: Chubby Jackson
  • Chummy: Chummy MacGregor
  • Cie: Cie Frazier
  • Cleanhead: Eddie Vinson
  • Conte: Conte Candoli
  • Coop: Bob Cooper
  • Cootie: Charles Williams
  • Corky: Corky Cornelius
  • Cornbread: Hal Singer
  • Count: Count Basie
  • Count (The): Conte Candoli
  • Count (The): Steve Marcus
  • Cow Cow: Charles Edward Davenport
  • Cozy: Cozy Cole
  • Crane: Dave Burns
  • Cutty: Cutty Cutshall
  • D

  • Dee: Dee Barton
  • Dee Dee: Dee Dee Bridgewater
  • Deedles: Diane Schuur
  • Dewey: Dewey Redman
  • Dicky: Dicky Wells
  • Dink: Dink Johnson
  • Dink: Harold Taylor
  • Dippermouth: Louis Armstrong a.k.a. "Satchmo", "Pops", "Satchel Mouth", "Dipper Mouth"
  • Divine One (The): Sarah Vaughan a.k.a. "Sassy"
  • Diz: Diz Disley
  • Dizzy, or Diz: John Birks Gillespie
  • Dizzy: Dizzy Reece
  • Django: Jean Baptiste Reinhardt
  • Doc: Doc Cheatham
  • Doc: Doc Cook
  • Doc: Doc Goldberg
  • Doc: Doc Souchon
  • Doc: Doc West
  • Doctor Miller: Glenn Miller
  • Dodo: Michael Marmarosa
  • Dolo: Dolo Coker
  • Duck: Donald Bailey
  • Dud: Dud Bascomb
  • Duke: Duke Ellington
  • Duke: Duke Groner
  • Duke: Duke Jordan
  • Duke (The): Bennie Green
  • E

  • Eddie Lang: Salvatore Massaro
  • Eubie: Eubie Blake
  • Ella: Ella Fitzgerald
  • F

  • Fat Boy : Fats Navarro
  • Fat Girl: Fats Navarro
  • Fathead: David Newman
  • Fats: Jimmy Ponder
  • Fats: Fats Sadi
  • Fats Waller: Thomas Waller
  • Fatha: Earl Hines
  • Fess: Fess Williams
  • Fiddler: Claude "Fiddler" Williams
  • First Lady (The): Ella Fitzgerald a.k.a. "the First Lady of Song"
  • Flip: Flip Phillips, born Joseph Edward Filipelli
  • Foots: Walter "Foots" Thomas
  • Fox (The): Maynard Ferguson
  • Frog: Ben Webster
  • G

  • Gatemouth: Clarence Brown
  • Geechy: James Robinson (musician)
  • Gigi: Gigi Gryce
  • Ginger: Ginger Smock
  • God: Art Tatum
  • Great Dane (The): Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen
  • Great Dane with the Never-Ending Name (The): Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen
  • Groaner (The): Bing Crosby
  • Groove: Richard Holmes
  • Guvnor (The): Ken Colyer
  • H

  • Half-Pint: Frankie Jaxon
  • Ham: Leonard Davis
  • Hammond: Johnny "Hammond" Smith
  • Hamp or Mad Lionel: Lionel Hampton
  • Hank: Hank Crawford
  • Hannibal: Hannibal Lokumbe
  • Happy: Happy Caldwell
  • Happy: David "Happy" Williams
  • Hawk: Coleman Hawkins a.k.a. "Bean"
  • Hi De Ho: Cab Calloway
  • High Priest of Bop Thelonious Monk
  • High Priestess of Soul Nina Simone
  • Hipster (The): Harry Gibson
  • Hod: Hod O'Brien
  • Hog: Leroy Cooper
  • Honeybear: Gene Sedric
  • Hootie: Jay McShann
  • Hoss: Walter Page
  • Hot Lips: Henry Busse
  • Hot Lips or Lips: Oran Page
  • Howdy: Howard "Howdy" Quicksell
  • I

  • Ivory: Herman Chittison
  • Ivory: Harold Ivory Williams
  • J

  • Jabbo: Jabbo Smith
  • Jaco: Jaco Pastorius
  • Jack: Jack Jenney
  • Jack: Jack Teagarden
  • Jackie: Jackie McLean
  • Jaki: Jaki Byard
  • Jaws: Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis
  • Jay: Jay Clayton
  • Jay: Jay McShann a.k.a. "Hootie"
  • Jeep: Johnny Hodges a.k.a. "Rab" (short for "Rabbit")
  • Jelly Roll: Ferdinand Joseph La Menthe
  • Jeru: Gerry Mulligan
  • Jiggs: Jiggs Whigham
  • Jiunie: Jiunie Booth
  • Jiver: Jiver Hutchinson
  • Joe Blade: Nick LaRocca
  • Johnny Mac: John McLaughlin
  • Judge: Milt Hinton
  • Jug or Jughead: Gene Ammons
  • Junior: Junior Cook
  • Junior: Junior Mance
  • Junior: Junior Raglin
  • J. R.: J. R. Monterose
  • K

  • Kaiser: Kaiser Marshall
  • Kansas: Carl Fields
  • Kat: Herbert Cowans
  • Keg: Keg Johnson
  • Keter: Keter Betts
  • Kid: Kid Howard
  • Kid: Kid Ory
  • Kid: Kid Rena
  • Kid Sheik: Kid Sheik
  • Kidd: Kidd Jordan
  • King: Buddy Bolden
  • King: Nat King Cole a.k.a. "Shorty Nadine"
  • King: King Curtis
  • King: King Fleming
  • King: Freddie Keppard
  • King: Joe Oliver a.k.a. "Papa Joe"
  • King: King Pleasure
  • King: King Watzke
  • King Kolax: King Kolax
  • King of the Clarinet: Artie Shaw
  • King of Cool: Dean Martin
  • King of Jazz: Paul Whiteman
  • King of the Jazz Guitar: Django Reinhardt
  • King of the Jukebox: Louis Jordan
  • King of Swing: Benny Goodman a.k.a. "the Patriarch of the Clarinet", "the Professor", "Swing's Senior Statesman"
  • Klook-Mop or Klook: Kenny Clarke
  • Knife (The): Pepper Adams
  • L

  • Lady Day: Billie Holiday
  • Leap Frog: Buster Bennett
  • Lion (The): Willie Smith
  • Lips or Hot Lips: Oran Page
  • Little: Benny Harris
  • Little Bird: Albert Ayler
  • Little Bird: Jimmy Heath
  • Little Brother: Little Brother Montgomery
  • Little Giant: Johnny Griffin
  • Little Jazz: Roy Eldridge
  • Little Johnny C: Johnny Coles
  • Little Man: Walter Buchanan
  • Little Mitch: George Mitchell
  • Lockjaw: Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis
  • Long Tall Dexter: Dexter Gordon
  • Lord: Chauncey "Lord" Westbrook
  • Lovie: Lovie Austin
  • Luckey: Luckey Roberts
  • Lucky: Lucky Millinder
  • Lucky: Eli Thompson
  • M

  • Ma: Ma Rainey
  • Mad Lionel: Lionel Hampton a.k.a. "Hamp"
  • Maffy: Muvaffak "Maffy" Falay
  • Maggie: Howard McGhee
  • Maharaja: Oscar Peterson
  • Major: Glenn Miller
  • Man (The): Sam Taylor
  • Mash: Art Blakey
  • Mex: Paul Gonsalves
  • Mezz: Mezz Mezzrow
  • Mick: Mick Mulligan
  • Mickey: Mickey McMahan
  • Midge: Midge Williams
  • Miff: Miff Mole
  • Mighty Flea (The): Gene Conners
  • Miles: Miles Davis
  • Min: Min Leibrook
  • Minor: Minor Hall
  • Mohawk: Ted Sturgis
  • Monk: Monk Hazel
  • Monk: Monk McFay
  • Monk: William Montgomery
  • Montudie: Ed Garland
  • Moonface, Wurmpth: Claude Thornhill
  • Mouse: Irving Randolph
  • Mousie or Mousey: Elmer Alexander
  • Mr. Bongo: Jack Costanzo
  • Mr. Five by Five: Jimmy Rushing
  • Mr. T: Stanley Turrentine
  • Mr. Clock: Freddie Green
  • Muffin, The Lamb: Donald Lambert
  • Muggsy: Muggsy Spanier
  • Mule: Major Holley
  • Mutt: Tom Carey a.k.a. "Papa Mutt"
  • N

  • Nappy: Hilton Lamare
  • Newk: Sonny Rollins
  • NHØP: Niels-Henning Ørsted Pedersen
  • Nick: Nick LaRocca
  • O

  • O Bruxo (The Sorcerer): Hermeto Pascoal
  • Ol' Blue Eyes: Frank Sinatra a.k.a. "The Voice"
  • Osie: Osie Johnson
  • P

  • Panama: Panama Francis
  • Pancho: Kenny Hagood
  • Papa: Papa Celestin
  • Papa: Louis "Papa" Tio
  • Papa Jack: Papa Jack Laine
  • Papa Jo: Jonathan David Samuel Jones
  • Papa Joe: Joe "King" Oliver
  • Papa Mutt: Thomas Carey a.k.a. Mutt Carey
  • Pat: Laurdine "Pat" Patrick
  • Patriarch of the Clarinet (the): Benny Goodman a.k.a. "the Professor", "Swing's Senior Statesman", "the King of Swing"
  • Peanuts: Peanuts Holland
  • Peanuts: Peanuts Hucko
  • Peck: Peck Kelley
  • Pee Wee: H. B. Barnum
  • Pee Wee: Alfred "Pee Wee" Ellis
  • Pee Wee: Pee Wee Erwin
  • Pee Wee: Pee Wee Hunt
  • Pee Wee: Pee Wee Russell
  • Pee Wee: Leon "Pee Wee" Whittaker
  • Pepper: Pepper Adams a.k.a. "the Knife"
  • Pete: Pete Candoli
  • Pha: Pha Terrell
  • Pharoah: Farrell Sanders
  • Phantom: Joe Henderson
  • Philly Joe: Joseph Jones
  • Pinetop: Pinetop Perkins (Joseph William Perkins)
  • Pinetop: Clarence Smith a.k.a. "Pine Top"
  • Polo: Polo Barnes
  • Pony: Norwood Poindexter
  • Pops: Sidney Bechet
  • Pops: Louis Armstrong a.k.a. "Satchel Mouth", "Satchmo", "Dipper Mouth"
  • Pops: George Murphy "Pops" Foster
  • Pops: Robert Popwell
  • Pops: Paul Whiteman
  • Porky: Al Porcino
  • Pretty: Bernard Purdie
  • Pres (preferred spelling) or Prez (short for "President"): Lester Young
  • Prince of Darkness: Miles Davis
  • Professor, the: Cab Calloway
  • Professor (the): Benny Goodman a.k.a. "the Patriarch of the Clarinet", "Swing's Senior Statesman", "the King of Swing"
  • Punch: Punch Miller
  • Q

  • Queen: Peggy Lee
  • Queen of the Jukeboxes: Dinah Washington
  • R

  • Rabbit: Johnny Hodges a.k.a. "Rab", "Jeep"
  • Ragbaby: Ragbaby Stephens
  • Rap: Leon Roppolo
  • Ray: Ray Bryant
  • Reb: Reb Spikes
  • Red: Red Allen
  • Red: Red Balaban
  • Red: Tom Brown
  • Red: Red Callender
  • Red: William Garland
  • Red: Red Holloway
  • Red: Red Ingle
  • Red: Red McKenzie
  • Red: Keith Mitchell
  • Red: Robert Muse
  • Red: Red Nichols
  • Red: Red Norvo
  • Red: Red Prysock
  • Red: Red Richards
  • Red: Alvin Tyler
  • Red Rodney: Red Rodney
  • Rosy: Rosy McHargue
  • Rusty: Rusty Bryant
  • Rusty: Lyle Dedrick
  • Rusty: Rusty Jones
  • S

  • Sabby: Sabby Lewis
  • Santy: Santy Runyon
  • Sassy: Sarah Vaughan a.k.a. "The Divine One"
  • Satchmo: Louis Armstrong a.k.a. "Dipper Mouth", "Pops", "Satchel Mouth"
  • Sax: Sax Mallard
  • Scoops: Scoops Carey
  • Scotty: Howard "Scotty" Scott
  • Scotty: Kermit Scott
  • Scrappy: Scrappy Lambert
  • Senator (the): Eugene Wright
  • Shadow: Rossiere Wilson
  • Shake: Shake Keane
  • Sharkey: Joseph Bonano
  • Shifty: Shifty Henry
  • Shorty: Harold Baker
  • Shorty: Shorty Rogers
  • Shorty: Shorty Sherock
  • Shorty Nadine: Nat King Cole
  • Sippie: Sippie Wallace
  • Sir: Sir Charles Thompson
  • Skeeter: Clifton Best
  • Skeets: Skeets Herfurt
  • Skeets: Skeets Tolbert
  • Skip: Skip Martin
  • Skippy: Skippy Williams
  • Skitch: Skitch Henderson
  • Slam: Slam Stewart
  • Sleepy Hall: Chick Bullock
  • Slide: Slide Hampton
  • Slim: Bulee Gaillard
  • Slow Drag: Alcide Pavageau
  • Smack: Fletcher Henderson
  • Smith: Smith Ballew
  • Smitty: Marvin Smith
  • Snakehips: Ken Snakehips Johnson
  • Snub: Snub Mosley
  • Sonny: Sonny Berman
  • Sonny: Sonny Blount
  • Sonny: Sonny Clark
  • Sonny: Sonny Clay
  • Sonny: Sonny Cohn
  • Sonny: Sonny Criss
  • Sonny: Sonny Dallas
  • Sonny: Sonny Dunham
  • Sonny: Sonny Greer
  • Sonny: Sonny Henry
  • Sonny: Clarence "Sonny" Henry
  • Sonny: Sonny Lester
  • Sonny: Sonny Payne
  • Sonny: Sonny Rollins a.k.a. "Newk"
  • Sonny: Sonny Russo
  • Sonny: Sonny Sharrock
  • Sonny: Sonny Simmons
  • Sonny: Edward Stitt
  • Sonny: Sonny White
  • Sound (the): Stan Getz
  • Spanky: Spanky Davis
  • Spanky: Spanky DeBrest
  • Specs: Gordon Powell
  • Specs: Specs Wright
  • Spike: Spike Heatley
  • Spike: Spike Hughes
  • Spike: Spike Robinson
  • Spike: Spike Wells
  • Spoon: Jimmy Witherspoon
  • Spud: Spud Murphy
  • Stan: Stan Hasselgård
  • Stix: Stix Hooper
  • Stork (the): Paul Desmond
  • Stuff: Stuff Smith
  • Stump: Stump Evans
  • Sunny: Sunny Murray
  • Swee' Pea: Billy Strayhorn
  • Sweets: Harry Edison
  • Swing's Senior Statesman: Benny Goodman a.k.a. "the Patriarch of the Clarinet", "the Professor", "the King of Swing"
  • Sy: Sy Oliver
  • T

  • Tab: Tab Smith
  • Tain: Jeff "Tain" Watts
  • Teo: Teo Macero
  • Tex: Tex Beneke
  • Tex: Herschel Evans
  • Tiger: Tiger Haynes
  • Tina: Tina Brooks
  • Tiny: Tiny Grimes
  • Tiny: Tiny Hill
  • Tiny: Tiny Kahn
  • Tiny: Tiny Taylor
  • Tito: Tito Burns
  • Toby: Scoville Browne
  • Toby: Otto Hardwick
  • Tootie: Albert "Tootie" Heath
  • Toots: Toots Mondello
  • Tram: Frank Trumbauer
  • Trane: John Coltrane
  • Tricky Sam: Joe Nanton
  • Truck: Truck Parham
  • Trummy: Trummy Young
  • Tubby: Tubby Hall
  • Tubby: Tubby Hayes a.k.a. "Tubbs"
  • Tuff: Tuff Green
  • Turk: Turk Murphy
  • Turk: Turk Van Lake
  • Tuts: Tuts Washington
  • Tutti: Tutti Camarata
  • V

  • Velvet Fog (The): Mel Tormé
  • Vice Prez: Paul Quinichette
  • Voice (The): Frank Sinatra a.k.a. "Ol' Blue Eyes"
  • Vonski: Von Freeman
  • W

  • Wes: Wes Montgomery
  • Whitey: Gordon Mitchell
  • Wig (The): Gerald Wiggins
  • Wild: Wild Bill Davis
  • Wild: Bill Davison
  • Wingy: Joseph Manone
  • Wooden: Wooden Joe Nicholas
  • Y

  • Yank: Yank Lawson
  • Yardbird: Charlie Parker a.k.a. "Bird"
  • Z

  • Ziggy: Ziggy Elman
  • Zoot: Jack Sims
  • Zutty: Zutty Singleton
  • References

    List of nicknames of jazz musicians Wikipedia


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