Arthur David Davis (December 6, 1934 – July 29, 2007)[1] was a double-bassist, known for his work with Thelonious Monk, John Coltrane, Dizzy Gillespie, McCoy Tyner and Max Roach.

Art Davis
Birth nameArthur David Davis
Born(1934-12-06)December 6, 1934
Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, U.S.
DiedJuly 29, 2007(2007-07-29) (aged 72)
InstrumentsDouble bass


Davis was born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, United States,[2] where he began studying the piano at the age of five, switched to tuba, and finally to bass while attending high school. He studied at Juilliard and Manhattan School of Music but graduated from Hunter College.[3]

As a New York session musician, he recorded with many jazz and pop musicians and also in symphony orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic and Los Angeles Philharmonic. He recorded with Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, and John Coltrane among other jazz musicians.[2] Art Davis was a professor at Orange Coast College.[4]

Davis is also known for starting a legal case that led to blind auditions for orchestras.[5]

Davis earned a Ph.D. in clinical psychology from New York University in 1982. He moved in 1986 to southern California, where he balanced his teaching and practicing of psychology with jazz performances.

Davis died on July 29, 2007, following a heart attack.[1] He was survived by two sons and a daughter.[6]


As leaderEdit

As sidemanEdit

With Joe Albany

With Gene Ammons

With Count Basie

With Art Blakey

With John Coltrane

With Buddy Emmons

With Curtis Fuller

With Dizzy Gillespie

With Bunky Green

With Al Grey

With Eddie Harris

With Freddie Hubbard

With Hasaan Ibn Ali

With Elvin Jones

With Etta Jones

With Quincy Jones

With Clifford Jordan

With Roland Kirk

With Abbey Lincoln

With Booker Little

With Roberto Magris

With Lee Morgan

With Tisziji Munoz

  • Visiting This Planet (Anami Music, 1980's)
  • Hearing Voices (Anami Music, 1980's)

With Joe Newman

With Dizzy Reece

With Max Roach

With Hilton Ruiz

  • The People's Music – Live at Jazz Unité, vol 1 (1981)
  • Green Street – Live at Jazz Unité, vol 2 (1981)

With Sal Salvador

With Pharoah Sanders

With Lalo Schifrin

With Shirley Scott

With Jack Teagarden

With Clark Terry

With McCoy Tyner

With Leo Wright


  1. ^ a b "Obituary: Art Davis". The Guardian. 27 August 2007. Retrieved 22 August 2021.
  2. ^ a b Colin Larkin, ed. (1992). The Guinness Encyclopedia of Popular Music (First ed.). Guinness Publishing. p. 637. ISBN 0-85112-939-0.
  3. ^ Matt Schudel (August 5, 2007). "Jazz Bassist Art Davis, 73; Later Became Psychologist". The Washington Post. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
  4. ^ Carr, Ian; Digby Fairweather; Brian Priestley (1995). Jazz: The Rough Guide. The Rough Guides. p. 156. ISBN 1-85828-137-7.
  5. ^ Jocelyn Y. Stewart (August 5, 2007). "Art Davis, renowned bassist, dies at 73". The Seattle Times. Archived from the original on September 21, 2011. Retrieved September 13, 2013.
  6. ^ "Art Davis, Coltrane's favourite bassist, dies at 73". August 4, 2007. Retrieved September 13, 2013.

External linksEdit