Sunday, January 29, 2012

James Jamerson, Bassman Extraordinaire in the Evolution of Rock 'n Roll

James Lee Jamerson (January 29, 1936 – August 2, 1983) was an American bass player. He was the uncredited bassist on most of Motown Records' hits in the 1960s and early 1970s (Motown did not list session musician credits on their releases until 1971), and he is now regarded as one of the most influential bass players in modern music history. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2000. (Wikipedia)
Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction ceremony

He is reported to have played on some 95% of Motown recordings between 1962 and 1968. He eventually performed on nearly 30 No. 1 pop hits—surpassing the record commonly attributed to The Beatles. On the R&B charts, nearly 70 of his performances went to the top.

Marvin Gaye was desperate to have Jamerson play on "What's Going On", and went to several bars to find the bassist. When he did, he brought  Jamerson to the studio, who then played the classic line while lying flat on his back…

Jamersons bass is prominent on “I Heard It Through The Grapevine”—Both Times!!! (Gladys Knight & The Pips as well as Marvin Gaye)…Check him out on Marvin Gaye’s take…
 There are VOLUMES written about  Mr. Jamerson (as there should be!). Google the man and be amazed...

(there are a lot of them!!!)

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