may, 2025

4mayAll DayMaynard Ferguson's BirthdayMan of Music 2006


Event Details

Maynard Ferguson was born on May 4th, 1928.

An initiate of the Xi Chi Chapter at Tennessee Tech University, Brother Ferguson rose to national fame while a member of Stan Kenton’s orchestra and a Hollywood session musician. In 1956, just six years after a feature performance with Kenton’s band on “The Ed Sullivan Show,” Ferguson formed his own band, which he would lead for a decade. Perhaps most widely known hits like “Birdland” and “Gonna Fly Now” (the theme from the movie “Rocky,” nominated for a Grammy in 1977), Ferguson was a master of soaring above his band into the upper register with a tone and timbre uniquely his own.

Ferguson and his band would tour ceaselessly throughout the country and all over the world. He would even make an appearance during the closing ceremony of the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, Canada. When it came to his music, Maynard Ferguson had done it all, switching up his musical style throughout his career from big band swing, to cool jazz, to Latin, to jazz/rock and fusion and more.

Brother Ferguson became the 21st recipient of the Fraternity’s “Man of Music” Award at the 52nd National Convention in Cleveland, Ohio in 2006.


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