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Dave Robbins (1923–2005) was an American-Canadian trombonist, composer, arranger, and teacher.[1] Born in Greensburg, Indiana, Robbins studied music education at Sam Houston State Teachers' College and the University of Southern California. After a stint in the United States Marine Corps, Robbins worked as a trombonist in symphony orchestras and in Harry James' band (1948–1954). He moved to Vancouver in 1951 and became a Canadian citizen in 1965.

Dave Robbins
Greensburg, Indiana, U.S.
Died2005 (aged 81–82)
GenresJazz, big band
Occupation(s)Trombonist, composer, arranger, teacher
Years active1948–2005
Associated actsHarry James

From 1955 to 1970, Robbins was the principal trombonist with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and performed with other local orchestras. He organized and led show bands featured in Vancouver nightclubs, and led some of city's most popular big bands. In the 1960s his big band was featured regularly on national radio programs. His original compositions included Jazz Impressions of the Middle East (1967).

Robbins taught young musicians at Vancouver Community College and the University of British Columbia. His students included Herb Besson, Hugh Fraser, R&B saxophonist Gordie Bertram of the Powder Blues Band, and New Orleans-based saxophonist and jazz educator John Doheny.


  1. ^ Robbins, Dave. (2008). The Canadian Encyclopedia. Historica Foundation.