BlackFacts Details

Lionel Hampton

Best Known As:

Jazz legend who was "King of the Vibes"

Lionel Hampton was a 20th century jazz musician and composer, and the most famous player of the vibraphone in the world. Hampton grew up in Alabama, Illinois and Wisconsin. While in Catholic school in Wisconsin he learned to play the drums, and after high school he went to Los Angeles and started his professional career at the age of 16. The story goes that Hampton first played the vibraphone -- an amplified xylophone with vibrato -- with Louis Armstrong on "Memories of You" (1930) and the song became a hit. He stuck with the vibes and played during the 1930s with Benny Goodman, as well as on various recordings. Hampton organized his own big band in 1940 and became famous for his entertaining live shows and for his commitment to spreading jazz throughout the world. Always a crowd pleaser, Hampton played with smaller bands after 1965 with continued success, up until his health began to fail in the 1990s. Some of his most famous songs include "On The Sunny Side of the Street," "Hot Mallets" (with Dizzy Gillespie), "Flying Home" and "Hey! Ba-Ba-Re-Bop."

Copyright © 1998-2017 by Who2?, LLC. All rights reserved.

Featured Videos

Independence Day Facts & Stats

Don"t just celebrate the 4th--learn a little more about your country!

Hey! It"s National Anti-Boredom Month

FactMonster Games are the cure for boredom!

Just how were ice cream cones & popsicles invented?

Learn how on FactMonster!








Terms of Use

Citing Fact Monster™

Contact Us


Part of FEN Learning





© 2000-2017 Sandbox Networks, Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Arts Facts

Blackfacts BETA RELEASE 11.0.5
(Production Environment)