Jimmy Maxwell, jazz trumpeter with many of the famed groups in the big-band era including those of Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Duke Ellington and Woody Herman, died July 20 at his home in Great Neck, N.Y. He was 85.
Stockton, Calif., native’s father played clarinet, his mother violin. In the 1940s, he joined CBS’ staff orchestra, working in radio and TV the next 30 years, including the NBC “Tonight Show” band 1960-1974.
He was the solo trumpet on the soundtrack to the movie “The Godfather,” played the bagpipes and was a frequent participant in the St. Patrick’s Day Parade in New York City.
He was with Goodman on his famous tour of Russia in 1962, fell ill on the trip and became addicted to heroin but successfully became a three-decade methadone user and went on with his career.
Survivors include a daughter, a son and four grandsons.