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Selected MP3s of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, and classic easy listening from the original vinyl.

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Welcome to Guitars & All That Jazz

Guitars & All That Jazz was a radio station that webcast via Live365 for 11 years, ending in June 2011. The playlist consisted of guitar instrumentals, jazz, big band, early rock 'n' roll, lounge music and classic easy listening.

I hope to share some of this music with you via this blog. Most of it will be taken from the original vinyl (LPs and 45s) , cassettes and the occasional commercially unavailable CD.

Here's hoping you'll find something to enjoy. Please note files are available only for a limited time.

I urge you to purchase the digital version of the albums featured, either on CD or via download, wherever possible.

Listen to the Music
There are now two music streams. Click the appropriate player to the right.
1. Guitars & All That Jazz: Five hours of the best in jazz, guitars and other instrumental gems. New songs are added weekly.
2. Tiki Shores: Music to sweep you away to a tropical isle, a South American dance floor or a bossa nova on the beach at Rio. About 4.5 hours of classic exotica music, Latin rhythms and bossa nova.

Friday, June 01, 2012

Little Jimmy Dempsey - The Golden Guitar of Little Jimmy Dempsey


Atlanta-born "Little" Jimmy Dempsey struggled with a brittle bone disease throughout his life, but managed to become a top session guitarist and record producer in Nashville in the 1970s.

Dempsey began appearing around Atlanta in the 1950s and soon moved into the city's recording studios, working with such up-and-coming performers as Jerry Reed and Ray Stevens. In 1961, Dempsey released Modern Guitar Artistry, his first LP under his own name.

His session work in Nashville began in the early '60s, but he didn't move there until late in the decade. Soon after arriving, he signed with Shelby Singleton's Plantation Records, becoming Singleton's session leader. Dempsey produced such artists as Jeannie C. Riley, Webb Pierce and Jerry Lee Lewis, as well as recording a couple of instrumental albums.

Dempsey also did a lot of guitar work at RCA Studios in the '70s, working with the likes of Roger Miller, Eddy Arnold and Skeeter Davis. He was also busy on the gospel music scene and released several more instrumental albums.

In 1980, Dempsey retired from music at age 43 and devoted a number of years to owning and training harness racing horses. He died in 1997.

When I was in the U.K. a number of years ago I picked up a double cassette release, The Golden Guitar of Little Jimmy Dempsey (1986), at a service station while travelling with friends. I'm not sure of the origin of these recordings, although they almost certainly had been previously released, perhaps on Plantation. Here's Bridge Over Troubled Waters from that cassette collection.

Bridge Over Troubled Waters

Many of the recordings on The Golden Guitar ... cassette turned up in 2004 on The Legendary Guitar of "Little" Jimmy Dempsey double-CD set produced by his son Tim Dempsey on his label Legends Records. Apparently the only place that you can now get this set is through Jimmy Dempsey's website. Only one of the tracks, We've Only Just Begun, is available from iTunes.

To close, from YouTube, a bit of musical nuttiness from Little Jimmy Dempsey.

1 comment:

  1. Another unsung hero for sure. I had this 45 called "Help me make it through the night" and I thought that the musicianship of this song was well done, but for years I got him confused with Little jimmy Dickens. Well, now that I have been corrected under doing some investigation of my own. The double cd is worth it, and I am hoping to obtain a copy as soon as i get my paycheck. Another unsung session guitarist to look up is Gene Fuller.

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