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Victor Feldman

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Victor Feldman

Victor Feldman
Feldman in San Francisco, 1976
Background information
Birth name Victor Stanley Feldman
Born (1934-04-07)April 7, 1934
Edgware, London, England
Died May 12, 1987(1987-05-12) (aged 53)
Woodland Hills, California
United States
Genres Jazz
Occupation(s) Musician
Instruments Vibraphone, drums, percussion, piano
Associated acts

Victor Stanley Feldman (April 7, 1934 – May 12, 1987) was a British jazz musician, best known as a pianist and percussionist.

He began performing professionally during childhood, eventually earning acclaim in the UK jazz scene as an adult. Feldman immigrated to the United States in the mid-1950s, where he continued working in jazz and also as a session musician with a variety of pop and rock performers.


  • Early history 1
  • Later jazz and U.S. session work 2
  • Discography 3
    • As leader 3.1
    • As sideman 3.2
  • References 4
  • External links 5

Early history

Feldman caused a sensation as a musical prodigy when he was "discovered", aged seven. His family were all musical and his father founded the Feldman Swing Club in London in 1942 to showcase his talented sons.[1] Feldman's first professional appearance was playing drums at No. 1 Rhythm Club as a member of the Feldman Trio with brothers Robert on clarinet and Monty on piano accordion. He featured in the films King Arthur Was a Gentleman (1942) and Theatre Royal (1943). In 1944 he was featured at a concert with Glenn Miller's AAAF band, as "Kid Krupa" (in reference to drummer Gene Krupa). His drums teacher Carlo Krahmer encouraged Feldman to play the vibraphone which he did first in the Ralph Sharon Sextet and later in the Roy Fox band. He worked in India in 1952 and 1953 in a band led by pianist Eddie Carroll. His vibraphone and conga drum playing were notable, but it was as a pianist that he became best known.

Later jazz and U.S. session work

Before leaving the U.K. in 1955 to work in the U.S., Feldman recorded with Cannonball Adderley and Miles Davis, most notably on Davis' 1963 album Seven Steps to Heaven, the title tune being his own composition. Davis invited Feldman to join his group full-time, but Feldman declined, preferring the stability of studio work to the career of a touring musician.[2] The 5-CD Shelly Manne Black Hawk set, originally released on LP in September, 1959, is a good representation of Feldman's unmistakable driving "comping" behind the soloists, helping to define the session as a valuable hard bop genre element.

In 1957 Feldman settled in Los Angeles permanently and then specialized in lucrative session work for the US film and recording industry. He also branched out to work with a variety of musicians outside of jazz, working with artists such as Frank Zappa in 1967, Steely Dan and Joni Mitchell in the 1970s and Tom Waits and Joe Walsh in the 1980s. Feldman died at his home, aged 53, following a heart attack.[3] In 2009, Feldman was inducted in the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum in Nashville, TN.[4]


As leader

As sideman

With Cannonball Adderley

With James Clay

With Bob Cooper

With Miles Davis

With Paul Horn

With Milt Jackson

With Sam Jones

With Barney Kessel

With John Klemmer

With Shelly Manne

With Carmen McRae

With Blue Mitchell

With Lalo Schifrin

With James Taylor

With Gino Vannelli

With Harold Vick

With Leroy Vinnegar

With Tom Waits


  1. ^ Barbara Feldman (1995-09-16). "100 Oxford Street - Arts & Entertainment". The Independent. Retrieved 2012-11-24. 
  2. ^ See Bob Belden's liner notes to the 2005 reissue of Seven Steps to Heaven. Columbia/Legacy CK 93592
  3. ^ "British-Born Jazz Prodigy Victor Feldman Dies".  
  4. ^

External links

  • Interview with Les Tomkins
  • Victor Feldman at AllMusic
  • Victor Feldman discography
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