Map of Merluna on After graduating high school, Morgan and DeBrest filled in for a couple of missing players in Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers with the bassist agreeing to stay on in the group. Unwilling to sign a contract, Morgan joined Dizzy Gillespie’s big band for two years (1957?1958) prior to reuniting with Blakey’s Jazz Messengers from 1958?1961. Hooked on heroin, the trumpeter drifted for a couple of years surfacing in New York City in the summer of 1963 to record his most commercial record, The Sidewinder, the title track of which was used in Chrysler ads during the 1965 World Series. Briefly rejoining Blakey (1964?1965), Morgan left in 1965 to front his own bands seeking to recapture the success of The Sidewinder. In all, the influential trumpeter recorded over twenty albums for Blue Note from 1956 to 1971. Morgan, a full-blown heroin addict in New York City during the early 1960s, met a woman in a club there in 1967 named Helen Moore (some sources say More). Some 14 years his senior, Moore knew all the local drug dealers (though not herself a user at the time) and empathized with the strung-out trumpeter. Map of Merluna 2016.
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