Born December 9, 1927, in Leeds, Yorkshire, England; died of cancer, June 22,1998. Jazz musician, free-lance reviewer, and author.
Green's love of jazz infiltrated almost all aspects of his life. An acclaimedtenor saxophonist who went by his nickname, Benny, Green was known for his skill on that instrument as well as his acerbic wit that found its way into many of the reviews he penned. Although he never completed his schooling, Green's music career had already taken off by the late 1940s and in 1953 he was named Most Promising New Jazz Musician. Five years later he was offered the chance to write a jazz column for the Observer, a post he maintained until 1977. During that time he also served as a book reviewer for the Spectator and as a film critic for Punch. Throughout his days reviewing the work of others he continued to perform music and wrote several books, including The Reluctant Art: Five Studies in the Growth of Jazz, Drumsin My Ears (jazz criticism), and the autobiography Swingtime in Tottenham. He also wrote the lyrics for Boots with Strawberry Jam, a musical biography of George Bernard Shaw, and the revision of Cole, a musical about the life of Cole Porter. Green was host of a popular BBC Radio 2 show called "The Art of the Songwriter," with which he was involved until onlya month before his death.
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