Fred Guy

Frederick L. Guy (May 23, 1897, Burkeville, Virginia - Dec. 22, 1971) was an American jazz banjo player and guitarist.

Fred Guy
New York City, c. November 1946
Background information
Born(1897-05-23)May 23, 1897
Burkesville, Virginia, U.S.
DiedDecember 22, 1971(1971-12-22) (aged 74)
Chicago, Illinois
GenresJazz, swing, big band
InstrumentsGuitar, banjo
Years active1924–1949
Associated actsDuke Ellington

Guy was raised in New York City. He played guitar and banjo with Joseph C. Smith's Orchestra. In the early 1920s, he joined Duke Ellington's Washingtonians, switching from banjo to guitar in the early 1930s. He remained with Ellington's orchestra until 1949. He retired, moved to Chicago, and for twenty years ran a ballroom. In 1971, he committed suicide.[1]


  1. Yanow, Scott (2013). The Great Jazz Guitarists. San Francisco: Backbeat. p. 88. ISBN 978-1-61713-023-6.
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