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Jazz and Blues birthdays: Timmons, Dupree and Fess | December 19, 2012

Bobby Timmons  1935-1974

Pianist and composer of the gospel-tinged trinity of tunes that made his name: This Here, Dat Dere and Moanin‘,  Timmons was best known for his work with Cannonball Adderley’s quintet and Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers.  His hardbop/blues/soul compositions defined the sound of jazz in the late 1950s and 1960s.

“Bobby Timmons on the gigs, in between tunes, he had this eight-bar thing he used to play. He would play it, and we’d always say, ‘Oooh, that’s funky.’ “–Benny Golson, explaining how he convinced Timmons to write “Moanin’.”

Cornell Dupree  1942-2011

 A versatile and always soulful guitarist.  Dupree grew up in Fort Worth, TX, with friends like saxophonist King Curtis.  Through Curtis , he established a long working relationship with Aretha Franklin (that’s his opening guitar riff on “Respect”).  A first-call studio musician, Dupree’s nickname was “Mr. 2,500”–for the number of recordings he appears on.

“No matter what I play, I just stay with the feeling of the song.  I don’t press, and I don’t try to impress.  Be yourself and play what comes natural — that’s my thing.”–Cornell Dupree

Henry Roeland Byrd:  Professor Longhair  1918-1980

The New Orleans pianist started his career in the 1940s but it wasn’t until the 1970s that he came to personify the city’s cultural renaissance.  He mixed styles of jazz, blues and Afro-Caribbean music into a distinct New Orleans sound, and was the inspiration for generations of keyboardists:  Dr. John, Art Neville, James Booker and Allen Toussaint.

“He put funk into music . . . Longhair’s thing had a direct bearing I’d say on a large portion of the funk music that evolved in New Orleans.”–Dr. John

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    A blog about Jazz, Blues, Latin Jazz, New Orleans, musician's stories and more. My name is Robin Lloyd and I've been involved in jazz radio and the music business for over 30 years. This is my personal blog.

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