Gerald L. “Jerry” Fuller, 89, passed away peacefully on June 24, 2019. He was an important traditional jazz clarinetist who made numerous television appearances as a member of the Jack Teagarden Orchestra and as an early member of the Dukes of Dixieland.
He played on many recordings beginning in 1954 while he was with the Jack Teagarden Orchestra. He accompanied jazz greats including Louis Armstrong, Wild Bill Davison, Lionel Hampton, Barrett Deems, Jim Beebe, Herb Ellis, Gene Schroeder, and Teddy Wilson. He also played on many releases from the Dukes of Dixieland with whom he toured extensively into the 60s.
Around 1970 he was hired to organize bands for a roadhouse in Dyer, Indiana called the Inn Place. Through connections he made there he helped to found the Illiana Jazz Society in 1973. In the later 70s and 80s, he was the bandleader at Romie’s Quarterdeck in Danvers, Massachusets and also played with local jazz greats including Don Doane and Jim Karolides.