|Birth Day:||May 16, 1929|
|Death Date:||September 26, 1998|
As per our current Database, Betty Carter died on September 26, 1998.
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Carter's confidence was well founded. In 1948, she was asked by Lionel Hampton to join his band. She finally had her big break. Working with Hampton's group gave her the chance to be bandmates with artists such as Charles Mingus and Wes Montgomery, as well as with Ernest Harold "Benny" Bailey, who had recently vacated Gillespie's band and Albert Thornton "Al" Grey who would later go on to join Gillespie's band. Hampton obviously had an ear for talent and a love for bebop. Carter too had a deep love for bebop as well as a talent for it. Hampton's wife Gladys gave her the nickname "Betty Bebop", a nickname she reportedly detested. Despite her good ear and charming personality, Carter was fiercely independent and had a tendency to attempt to resist Hampton's direction, while Hampton had a temper and was quick to anger. Hampton expected a lot from his players and did not want them to forget that he was the band's leader. She openly hated his swing style, refused to sing in a swinging way, and she was far too outspoken for his tastes. Carter honed her scat singing ability while on tour, which was not well received by Hampton as he did not enjoy her penchant for improvisation. Over the course of two and a half years, Hampton fired Carter a total of seven times.
Carter was part of the Lionel Hampton Orchestra that played at the famed Cavalcade of Jazz in Los Angeles at Wrigley Field which was produced by Leon Hefflin, Sr. on July 10, 1949. They did a second concert at Lane Field in San Diego on September 3, 1949. They also performed at the sixth famed Cavalcade of Jazz concert on June 25, 1950. Also featured on the same day were Roy Milton & His Solid Senders, Pee Wee Crayton's Orchestra, Dinah Washington, Tiny Davis & Her Hell Divers, and other artists. 16,000 people were reported to be in attendance and the concert ended early because of a fracas while Hampton's band played "Flying High".
Very soon after Carter's arrival in New York City, she was given the opportunity to record with King Pleasure and the Ray Bryant Trio, becoming more recognizable and well-known and subsequently being granted the chance to sing at the Apollo Theatre. This theatre was known for giving up-and-coming artists the final shove into becoming household names. Carter was propelled into prominence, recording with Epic label by 1955 and was a well-known artist by the late 1950s. Her first solo LP, Out There, was released on the Peacock label in 1958.
Miles Davis can be credited for Carter's bump in popularity, as he was the person who recommended to Ray Charles that he take Carter under his wing. Carter began touring with Charles in 1960, then making a recording of duets with him in 1961 (Ray Charles and Betty Carter), including the R&B-chart-topping "Baby, It's Cold Outside", which brought her a measure of popular recognition. In 1963 she toured in Japan with Sonny Rollins. She recorded for various labels during this period, including ABC-Paramount, Atco and United Artists, but was rarely satisfied with the resulting product. After three years of touring with Charles and a total of two recordings together, Carter took a hiatus from recording to marry. She and her husband had two children. However, she continued performing, not wanting to be dependent upon her husband for financial support.
Carter created her own record label, Bet-Car Records, in 1969, the sole recording source of Carter's music for the next eighteen years:
By 1975, Carter's life and work prospects began to improve, and Carter was beginning to be able to pick her own jobs once again, touring in Europe, South America, and the United States. In 1976, Carter was a guest live performer on Saturday Night Live′s first season on the air, and was also a performer at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1977 and 1978, carving out a permanent place for herself in the music business as well as in the world of jazz.
In 1977, Carter enjoyed a new peak in critical and popular estimation, and taught a master class with her past mentor, Dizzy Gillespie, at Harvard. In the last decade of her life, Carter began to receive even wider acclaim and recognition. In 1987 she signed with Verve Records, who reissued most of her Bet-Car albums on CD for the first time and made them available to wider audiences. In 1988 she won a Grammy for her album Look What I Got! and sang in a guest appearance on The Cosby Show (episode "How Do You Get to Carnegie Hall?"). In 1994 she performed at the White House and was a headliner at Verve's 50th anniversary celebration in Carnegie Hall. She was the subject of a 1994 short film by Dick Fontaine, Betty Carter: New All the Time.
Some of her most famous recordings were originally issued on Bet-Car, including the double album The Audience with Betty Carter (1980). In 1980 she was the subject of a documentary film by Michelle Parkerson, But Then, She's Betty Carter. Carter's approach to music did not concern solely her method of recording and distribution, but also her choice in venues. Carter began performing at colleges and universities, starting in 1972 at Goddard College in Vermont. Carter was excited at this opportunity, as it was since the mid-1960s that Carter had been wanting to visit schools and provide some sort of education for students. She began lecturing along with her musical performances, informing students of the history of jazz and its roots.
1993 was Carter's biggest year of innovation, creating a program called Jazz Ahead, which took 20 students who were given the opportunity to spend an entire week training and composing with Carter, a program that still exists to this day and is hosted in The Kennedy Center.
In 1997 she was awarded a National Medal of Arts by President Bill Clinton. This award was one of thousands, but Carter considered this medal to be her most important that she received in her lifetime.
Carter continued to perform, tour, and record, as well as search for new talent until she was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer in the summer of 1998. She died on September 26, 1998, at the age of 69, and was later cremated. She was survived by her two sons.
On June 25, 2019, The New York Times Magazine listed Betty Carter among hundreds of artists whose material was reportedly destroyed in the 2008 Universal Studios fire.
Currently, Betty Carter is 92 years, 6 months and 16 days old. Betty Carter will celebrate 93rd birthday on a Monday 16th of May 2022.
Find out about Betty Carter birthday activities in timeline view here.