A consistently engaging, impressive bassist, George Duvivier's solo specialty was playing fast notes in the upper register, while providing steady, deep accompaniment and sharp, strong playing in an ensemble situation. Though he seldom took a leadership role, he was a premier session, studio and section contributor, flexible enough to handle jam sessions, combo, studio or live dates. During his career, he worked with swing, bop, and cool players, even the adventurous Eric Dolphy. Duvivier studied violin at the Conservatory of Music and Art in New York and became assistant concertmaster of The Central Manhattan Symphony Orchestra at 16. He switched to bass, later studying composition at New York University. Duvivier played with Coleman Hawkins, Eddie Barefield and Lucky Millinder in the early '40s, then went into the army. After his discharge, he was Jimmie Lunceford's staff arranger from 1945 to 1947, then joined Sy Oliver's big band, doubling as bassist and arranger. During the '50s, Duvivier toured Europe extensively with Lena Horne and Nellie Lutcher, and played on many film soundtracks, commercial jingles and television shows. He made a rare date as a leader for the French Coronet label in 1956, playing with Martial Solal. Duvivier stayed busy with jazz dates, playing with Bud Powell from 1953 to 1957, and recording and playing with Chico Hamilton, Benny Goodman, Oliver Nelson, Shelly Manne, Count Basie/Joe Williams, Frank Sinatra, Clark Terry, Ben Webster, Bob Wilber and Dolphy. He toured with Hank Jones and Benny Carter during the late '70s. Duvivier also recorded with duos Al Cohn and Zoot Sims and Sims with Joe Venuti, plus Warren Vache and Jones. He died in 1985.
- by Ron Wynn
All Music Group