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Jake Hanna


Jake Hanna grew up in Dorchester, MA and attended Berklee School of Music. He played with the Woody Herman and Maynard Ferguson orchestras. Jake was house drummer at Boston's club "Storyville" and played with PeeWee Russell, Vic Dickenson, Buck Clayton and Bud Freeman. He played at Hickory House with Marian McPartland, then toured with Harry James. Jake then became the drummer for the studio band of the Merv Griffin Show. His highlight was as a member of the Bing Crosby personal quartet with Joe Bushkin, Milt Hinton and Johnny Smith until Bing's death. Jake has logged 150 recordings and toured throughout the world.

A superior drummer equally at ease driving a big band or playing in small mainstream combos, Jake Hanna has been a strong asset to a countless number of sessions. He started out playing locally in Boston and worked with Toshiko Akiyoshi (1957), Maynard Ferguson (1958), as the house drummer at Storyville in Boston, with Marian McPartland (1959-61) and most significantly with the Woody Herman Orchestra (1962-64).


As a studio musician, he was a regular member of the Merv Griffin television program's big band (1964-75), moving with the show to Los Angeles (1970) where he is still based.
Hanna co-led a group with Carl Fontana that recorded for Concord in 1975, played with Supersax and has since appeared on many mainstream and swing sessions, becoming a fixture at jazz parties and festivals. He has recorded many dates (mostly as a sideman) for Concord. By Scott YanowThe All Music Guide

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