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Dorothy Jeanne Thompson (August 6, 1932 – April 13, 1986), better known as Dorothy Ashby, was an American jazz harpist and composer. Hailed as one of the most "unjustly under loved jazz greats of the 1950s" and the "most accomplished modern jazz harpist," Ashby established the harp as an improvising jazz instrument, beyond earlier use as a novelty or background orchestral instrument, proving the harp could play bebop as adeptly as the instruments commonly associated with jazz, such as the saxophone or piano.

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  • Dorothy Ashby
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  • Dorothy Jeanne Thompson (August 6, 1932 – April 13, 1986), better known as Dorothy Ashby, was an American jazz harpist and composer. Hailed as one of the most "unjustly under loved jazz greats of the 1950s" and the "most accomplished modern jazz harpist," Ashby established the harp as an improvising jazz instrument, beyond earlier use as a novelty or background orchestral instrument, proving the harp could play bebop as adeptly as the instruments commonly associated with jazz, such as the saxophone or piano.
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  • Dorothy Ashby
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  • Dorothy Ashby
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  • External Image
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  • Dorothy Jeanne Thompson
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  • Santa Monica, California
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  • Detroit, Michigan, U.S.
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