Art Blakey and Horace Silver formed the Jazz Messengers in 1955 and co-led it. When Silver dropped out in the group's first year the group name was changed to Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers. Wayne Shorter was a long-standing member of the group, joining after the departure of Benny Golson, while other young musicians like Curtis Fuller, Donald Byrd, Jymie Merritt, Hank Mobley, Freddie Hubbard, Lee Morgan, Bobby Timmons and Wynton Marsalis would come and go. Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers continued to peform until shortly before Blakey's death in 1990.
Art Blakey continues to be a legend among drummers, while the works of his Jazz Messengers are treasured among jazz musicians.