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Tuesday, October 06, 2015

Jack Tracy Obituary

Tracy, Jack
July 27, 1926 - December 21, 2010
Jack Tracy died on December 21st of heart failure in the midst of loving friends and family in Nooksack, WA. Born in 1926 in Minneapolis, MN, he enlisted in the Navy in WWII and served as a medic treating and caring for the returning wounded. When he graduated from the University of Minnesota, love for words and music led him to a job in Chicago at Down Beat magazine, where he was editor from 1953-58. Jack left the magazine business to produce for the Mercury, Argo, Limelight, and Liberty record labels. In 1959, he worked for record mogul Leonard Chess. In 1961, Quincy Jones convinced him to rejoin Mercury as an A&R man in Los Angeles. Artists he worked with included Dizzy Gillespie and Sarah Vaughan, Roland Kirk and Oscar Peterson, Woody Herman, Cannonball Adderly, John Coltrane, Del Close, Harry Nilsson, Mike Nichols and Elaine May, and Terry Gibbs. He was known for his wit and stories. In 1963, he collaborated on an anecdotal memoir of jazz humor, "Laughter from the Hip." A great fan of baseball and American politics, when he died he was still a fan of the former. Jack was the beloved father of Michael of San Francisco, CA, Timothy (Becky Johns) of Everson, WA and Christine (Richard) Harrison of Las Vegas, NV; cherished grandfather of Cote Anne Tracy and Lisa Harrison.
A memorial service will be announced. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, well-wishers go out and do something nice for jazz. Contact: Facebook Jack Lee Tracy and

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Published in the Los Angeles Times from 12/29/2010 - 1/2/2011