April 1, 1922 pianist Irving Sidney “Duke” Jordan was born in New York.
Jordan was born in New York and raised in Brooklyn where he attended Boys High School. An imaginative and gifted pianist, Jordan was a regular member of Charlie Parker’s quintet during 1947–48, which also featured Miles Davis. He participated in Parker’s Dial sessions in late 1947 that produced “Dewey Square”, “Bongo Bop”, “Bird of Paradise”, and the ballad “Embraceable You”. These performances are featured on Charlie Parker on Dial. Jordan had a long solo career from the mid-1950s onwards, although for a period in the mid-1960s he drove a taxi in New York. After periods accompanying Sonny Stitt and Stan Getz, he performed and recorded in the trio format. His most notable composition, “Jordu”, became a jazz standard when trumpeter Clifford Brown adopted it into his repertoire. Beginning in 1978 he lived in Copenhagen, Denmark, having recorded an extensive sequence of albums for the SteepleChase label; his first record date for the company was in 1973. He was reported not to have changed his style over the course of his career. Some of his best live recordings are available on SteepleChase, or Marshmallow Records, a Japanese label. From 1952 to 1962 he was married to the jazz singer Sheila Jordan. Their union produced a daughter, Tracey J. Jordan. He died in Valby, Copenhagen.