The Kennedy Center

Charles Christopher Parker


Charles Christopher Parker, Jr.  was an American jazz saxophonist and composer. To critics and fans alike, Parker was one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time. His contributions were so longstanding that nearly every modern jazz artist replicates his signature style without thinking about it. A seminal figure in bebop jazz, Parker's innovative approach to melody, rhythm, and harmony exerted a profound influence on jazz. Many of Parker's songs have become standards of the beat and cool jazz repertoires as well as innumerable musicians studying Parker's musical innovations and absorbing those indefatigable elements of his musical style. Moreover, Parker was a pivotal figure in the evolving conception of the jazz musician as an artist, an intellectual, rather than merely an entertainer.
Charlie Byrd Parker