I’ve been hearing that Jimmy Smith died last night– this is the loss of a great jazz legend. I have often wondered why there have not been more organ players in jazz. While there are several any jazz fan can name at the drop of the hat (Lonnie Liston Smith, John Patton, Larry young, Groove Holmes), the organ (particularly the Hammond B3) has been relegated to “funk jazz” status in the minds of many fans.
Not that there is anything wrong with funky, or groove jazz, but the organ deserves a better shake– and there has been no better representative of the instument in jazz than Jimmy Smith. He will be missed, especially as he has remained active and vital in the music scene (I am told he has ana lbum due with Joey DeFrancesco).
What’s upsetting is a Google news search turns up nothing as of 2pm ET today. Pathetic.