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This profile was last updated on 4/15/14  and contains information from public web pages.

Conductor and Arranger for Top Mo...

The Supremes

Employment History


  • music
    Hartnett School of Music
53 Total References
Web References
PASSINGS: Gil ..., 15 April 2014 [cached]
Gil Askey, arranger for top Motown acts, dies at 89.
Gil Askey
Arranger for top Motown acts
Gil Askey, 89, a trumpeter, conductor and arranger for top Motown acts, including the Supremes, the Temptations and the Four Tops, died April 9 in Melbourne, Australia. He had lymphoma, according to his family.
Motown founder Berry Gordon later assigned Askey to work with the Supremes.
"A gifted musician and a natural entertainer, Gil was indispensable both on and off stage.
Askey also produced the Supremes' last concert in 1970 before lead singer Diana Ross left the group for a solo career.
Born March 9, 1925, in Austin, Texas, Askey served in the Army Special Services Band during World War II. After the war, he played trumpet in the Milton Larkin Orchestra in Houston and the Buddy Johnson Band. Later he backed acts such as Frankie Lymon and the Teenagers, the Platters, the Clovers and Jackie Wilson.
In 1980 he married an Australian woman and moved to Melbourne, where he taught music. He returned to the U.S. in 1983 to help produced Motown's 25th anniversary TV special and tour. - Montclair Times Community, 23 April 2003 [cached]
Gil Askey had a knack for making the best of bad situations.He had played trumpet with a number of well-known orchestras before becoming Motown's musical director for The Supremes and Four Tops.When things got out of hand once during a concert in Antwerp, Belgium, that starred The Four Tops, Askey leaped on stage and played trumpet magnificently until the audience quieted down.
Noosa Jazz Festival, 2 Feb 2006 [cached]
Gil AskeyNoosa Jazz Festival
Gil Askey
Gil Askey was born in Austin Texas in 1925 and played as a jazz trumpeter for almost 20 years before becoming a musical director for Motown and other companies for over 20 years.
A native of Austin, Texas, Gil Askey studied music at the Boston Conservatory of Music and the Hartnett School of Music in New York.He has played or appeared on stage with some of the biggest names in jazz such as Coleman Hawkins, Ben Webster, Lucky Thompson, Dizzy Gillespie, Miles Davis, Sonny Stitt, the Duke (Ellington), the Count (Basie), Kenny Dorham, Art Blakey and even did a set with Billie Holiday.In 2004 Gil played briefly with Melbourne band Cat Empire - click here for more
Gil Askey spent almost twenty years in the jazz scene prior to his twenty-three year career at Motown, Warner Brothers and other companies, working as musical director, arranger or producer for such artists as Diana Ross and the Supremes, the Four Tops, the Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Stevie Wonder, the Jackson Five (with Michael), Smokey Robinson, Gladys Knight, and of course the Funk Brothers whose music is celebrated in STANDING IN THE SHADOWS OF MOTOWN.
Askey has worked with many other musicians and performers including Liza Minnelli, Ann Margaret, Mitzi Gaynor, and his dear friend Curtis Mayfield.
Askey now lives in Melbourne with his family, and tutors young musicians, hosts workshops and still plays trumpet at various venues around town.
Texas Black History Preservation Project -- This Week, 19 Feb 1988 [cached]
9 - Legendary Motown producer, composer, and musical director Gil Askey was born in Austin on this day in 1925.
Askey attended the original Anderson
At Motown, Askey was musical director for Diana Ross and worked with other artists, including
Askey was nominated for an Academy Award for his work on the 1972 film "Lady
TexasBlackHistoryNow, 7 Mar 2016 [cached]
and Gil Askey.
Askey also played trumpet and worked with jazz and big band greats, and became a
Askey was nominated for an
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