Born in Greenock, Scotland. Played trumpet with Kenny Graham’s Afro Cubists changed to tenor sax became a jazz studio player. Played with almost everyone in show business. He has worked (often as a featured soloist) with Henry Mancini, Robert Farnon, Benny Goodman, Gil Evans, Bill Holman, Nelson Riddle, Peggy Lee, Frank Sinatra, Tony Bennett, Bing Crosby, Count Basie, Fred Astaire, Benny Carter, Mel Torme, Paul McCartney…the list is endless.
The Young Person’s Guide to the Jazz Orchestra, The Carnival of the Animals, Soho Suite (commissioned for The Soho Festival), Sherlock Holmes Suite commissioned for the festival of London with Sir Spike Milligan, Cinderella, Carmen, Buddy Rich Suite and many others. His most recent being Porgy and Bess with an all-star orchestra. Duncan has arranged and conducted for the B.B.C. for many years and has recorded as a soloist and an arranger with the Metropole Orchestra. His suite Beautiful Ireland for the Ulster Youth Jazz Orchestra was performed at the Londonderry Jazz Festival.
Children’s TV writing includes Mr Benn, voted the sixth most popular children’s programme of all time in a nationwide poll, Towser, Rik the Raven, Victor and Maria, Spot and many others including five videos for Disney and one Grammy nomination for Spot.
Two books of Duncan’s songs have been performed and recorded by the cream of singers. Cleo Laine, Blossom Dearie, Mark Murphy, Sandra King, Norma Winstone, Elaine Delmar, Marlene Verplank, Daryl Sherman, Joyce Breach, Richard Rodney Bennett, Frank Holder, Nancy Marano and Natalie Cole. He has earned the respect of some of the most important people in music as a player, writer, arranger and composer, including Benny Carter, Johnny Mandel, Marty Paich & Claire Fisher.
George Shearing has recorded a solo version of Duncan Lamont’s song Not You Again on a recent CD. Cleo Laine finished her performance at Carnegie Hall with Duncan’s Not You Again and Sammy Cahn, the legendary lyricist wrote an article on Duncan Lamont with the quote “It makes me very happy that people are still writing songs like I Told You So” (This composition won best Jazz song of the year in America) Tomorrow’s Standards a CD of Duncan’s songs recorded in New York won Best Jazz Album of the Year in Britain in 1992.
One of his most treasured possessions is a letter from Fred Astaire saying how much he liked Duncan’s song Fred Astaire.
Blossom Dearie in a New York Times interview mentioned Duncan Lamont as one of her favourite songwriters. Cleo Laine has just recorded three more of his songs, also Duncan hosted an off Broadway evening of his songs.
Duncan led a big band for eleven years to raise money for cancer research.
His saxophone compositions are used by the Associated Board of Music for educational purposes and examinations
When Gil Evans in a magazine interview was asked who his favourite contemporary writer was, he quoted Duncan Lamont.
Duncan also won the John Dankworth jazz award for long standing talent in 1999.
Recent releases include a double album of songs entitled Carousel with Frank Holder and Nancy Marano, a duo album Happy Talk with Brian Dee.
Natalie Cole has recorded I Told You So on her album & DVD Ask a Woman Who Knows.