Sam Dockery

Samuel Dockery (1929 – December 21, 2015), nicknamed Sure-Footed Sam, was a hard bop pianist and well-respected musician on the Philadelphia jazz scene since the early 1950s.[1] Dockery was born in Camden, New Jersey.[2] He appears on 11 recordings as the pianist for Art Blakey & the Jazz Messengers and composed "Sam's Tune" which appears on their 1957 Blue Note recording Ritual.[3] In 1963 he was the pianist for Betty Carter's extended engagement at Birdland,[4] and headed The Sam Dockery Trio in Philadelphia during the 1990s. He also taught at Philadelphia's University of the Arts.[1] He died in 2015, aged 86.[2]


With Art Blakey

With Clifford Brown

With Butch Ballard and Dylan Taylor


  1. 1 2 Allmusic Biography. See also:"A Veteran Piano Man Just Keeps on Playing", Philadelphia Inquirer, August 9, 1996
  2. 1 2 "Samuel Dockery, 86; Philadelphia jazz pianist"
  3. Alan Goldsher, Hard bop academy: the sidemen of Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, Hal Leonard Corporation, 2002, p. 91. ISBN 0-634-03793-5
  4. William R. Bauer, Open the Door: The Life and Music of Betty Carter, University of Michigan Press, 2003, p.91.ISBN 0472067915
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