Signs to Frank Sinatra's Reprise Records
Wins two awards at first ever Grammys
Scores Billboard number one with "Open The Door, Richard"
Forms The Count Basie Orchestra
Lands first professional gig at Leroy's
The street where Basie grew up in, Mechanic Street, has since been renamed Count Basie Way, while Red Bank's Count Basie Theatre was also named in his honor.
"I just think swing is a matter of some good things put together that you can really pat your foot by. I can't define it beyond that." Basie quoted in Stanley Dance's The World Of Swing, 1974.
On May 23, 1985, Basie was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President Ronald Reagan.
Basie's song, "One O'Clock Jump," was included by the National Recording Preservation Board in the Library of Congress National Recording Registry in 2005.