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Ray Brown was born on October 13, 1926, in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and took piano lessons as a child.[1] After noticing how many pianists attended his high school, he thought of taking up the trombone, but his father was unable to afford one. With a vacancy in the high school jazz orchestra, he took up the upright bass instead. A major early influence on Brown's bass playing was Jimmy Blanton, the bassist in the Duke Ellington band. Brown's high school music teacher believed that he was a diligent student, as he took the bass home with him on weekends. Brown, however, was already using the school bass in gigs; when this was discovered, the bass had to be returned and Brown's father bought him one. Brown graduated high school in 1944 AND MORE!

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