Home » blog » Nat King Cole Got His Kicks on Route 66

Nat King Cole Got His Kicks on Route 66

(Editor’s Note: Happy New Year. I’ve given up on finding good music for the holiday. There isn’t too much. Check out yesterday’s post for what I could find.

TDMB periodically re-posts great music from earlier in the site’s existence. Here is Nat King Cole’s trio playing “Route 66.” The post originally appears on March 28, 2012.)


Nat King Cole started out as a pianist. His great voice and friendly demeanor enabled him to become a front man. I believe he was the first African-American to host a network entertainment program.

Here is Route 66 which, of course, was one of his big hits. There isn’t a wasted motion by anyone in the quartet. The guitarist is fantastic. According to the comments, he is Irving Ashby.

Three of his other big hits were Straighten Up and Fly Right, Unforgettable and Mona Lisa. PBS did an American Masters piece on Cole in 2006. Though there is a good deal of information here, I can’t find the actual download of the episode. Finally, here’s a discography.