Finally, the finale in the Organ Grinders. Thanks for sticking around.
The last man is The Man. Jimmy Smith basically changed the way the organ was viewed and played. In all musical styles and genera. His story plays out like an old blues guitar player’s: He started out playing the piano and winning contest by age 12. After serving the country in the navy at the age of 15 (what?), he went to a music school to hone his craft. But after hearing organist Wild Bill Davis, he bought a Hammond B3 and set up in a warehouse to practice. He disappeared for a year. When he finally emerged in 1955, he came out as the greatest organ player alive, The Incredible Jimmy Smith,and began playing clubs in Philly , then New York. He was quickly signed to Blue Note records, where he played his ass off. The man was prolific. Like Prince prolific, providing so much music that Blue Note was still releasing his recordings into the 80s.
Jimmy must have had the same regenerative powers as Wolverine, cuz his ass grew back in 1962, where he proceeded to sign with Verve records, and promptly played his ass completely off. He continued to play up until his death in 2005.
In his career, he played with The Best jazz musicians, and highly influenced other organ grinders such as Jimmy McGriff, Brother Jack McDuff, Richard “Groove” Holmes and Charles Earland. While researching this, I found out that he played on the title track to Michael Jackson‘s Bad album (wich I won’t hold against him just cuz I hate the video). He’s been sampled by the likes of De La Soul, Nas, Kylie Minogue, and of course, The Beastie Boys. His stuff is just so funky, so soulful. Plus, his music is always a fall-back if I’m having trouble thinking what to post. So if you see a Jimmy posting, you know my brain is fried, but the music will be straight.
Ladies and Gentlemen:The Cat- Jimmy Smith
Goldfinger(Part II)- Jimmy Smith
Mission: Impossible- Jimmy Smith
C Jam Blues- Jimmy Smith
OGD- Jimmy Smith and Wes Montgomery
Root Down (and Get It)- Jimmy Smith