Les Brown

American Clarinetist, Saxophonist, Composer and Big Band Leader of the Jazz Swing Era

Lester Raymond “Les” Brown, Sr. was born March 14, 1912 in Reinerton, Pennsylvania. Les Brown attended Duke University from 1932-1936 where he led the group Les Brown and His Blues Devils. He left Duke with a few of his band members in 1936 and by 1938 the band rebranded themselves as the Band of Renown. Les Brown was married one time and had his son Les Jr. and a daughter Denise. Les Brown passed away in 2001 at 88 years old of lung cancer. Les Brown was inducted into the North Carolina Music Hall of Fame in 2010. Les Brown’s son Les Brown Jr became the leader of the Band of Renown in 2001 and they continue to perform around the world.