Idrees Sulieman was born Leonard Graham on 7 August 1923.He studied at the Boston Conservatory, and gained early experience playing with the Carolina Cotton Pickers and the wartime Earl Hines Orchestra (1943–1944).   On October 15, 1947, on what was Suliman's second recording date (source: liner notes by Michael Cuscuna to The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Thelonious Monk) he played on Thelonious Monk’s first recording for Blue Note Records. Sulieman was closely associated with Mary Lou Williams and for a time and had stints with Cab Calloway, John Coltrane, Count Basie, and Lionel Hampton. Sulieman recorded with Coleman Hawkins (1957) and gigged with Randy Weston (1958–1959), in addition to appearing in many other situations.   He toured Europe in 1961 with Oscar Dennard, and stayed, settling in Stockholm at first, and then moved to Copenhagen in 1964. A soloist with the Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band from the mid-'60s through 1973, Sulieman frequently worked with radio orchestras. His recordings as a leader were for Swedish Columbia (1964) and SteepleChase (1976 and 1985). In 1985, he was among the performers on Miles Davis' album Aura, which was not released until 1989. Sulieman's career slowed down considerably in the 1990s.
  Idrees Sulieman was born Leonard Graham on 7 August 1923.He studied at the Boston Conservatory, and gained early experience playing with the Carolina Cotton Pickers and the wartime Earl Hines Orchestra (1943–1944).   On October 15, 1947, on what was Suliman's second recording date (source: liner notes by Michael Cuscuna to The Complete Blue Note Recordings of Thelonious Monk) he played on Thelonious Monk’s first recording for Blue Note Records. Sulieman was closely associated with Mary Lou Williams and for a time and had stints with Cab Calloway, John Coltrane, Count Basie, and Lionel Hampton. Sulieman recorded with Coleman Hawkins (1957) and gigged with Randy Weston (1958–1959), in addition to appearing in many other situations.   He toured Europe in 1961 with Oscar Dennard, and stayed, settling in Stockholm at first, and then moved to Copenhagen in 1964. A soloist with the Kenny Clarke/Francy Boland Big Band from the mid-'60s through 1973, Sulieman frequently worked with radio orchestras. His recordings as a leader were for Swedish Columbia (1964) and SteepleChase (1976 and 1985). In 1985, he was among the performers on Miles Davis' album Aura, which was not released until 1989. Sulieman's career slowed down considerably in the 1990s.
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Idrees Sulieman
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