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Gene Ammons

Gene Ammons, who had a huge and immediately recognizable tone on tenor, was a very flexible player who could play bebop with the best (always battling his friend Sonny Stitt to a tie) yet was an influence on the R&B world. Some of his ballad renditions became hits and, despite two unfortunate interruptions in his career, Ammons remained a popular attraction for 25 years.

Son of the great boogie-woogie pianist Albert Ammons, Gene Ammons (who was nicknamed "Jug") left Chicago at age 18 to work with King Kolax's band. He originally came to fame as a key soloist with Billy Eckstine's orchestra during 1944-1947, trading off with Dexter Gordon on the famous Eckstine record Blowing the Blues Away. Other than a notable stint with Woody Herman's Third Herd in 1949 and an attempt at co-leading a two tenor group in the early '50s with Sonny Stitt, Ammons worked as a single throughout his career, recording frequently (most notably for Prestige) in settings ranging from quartets and organ combos to all-star jam sessions. Drug problems kept him in prison during much of 1958-1960 and, due to a particularly stiff sentence, 1962-1969. When Ammons returned to the scene in 1969, he opened up his style a bit, including some of the emotional cries of the avant-garde while utilizing funky rhythm sections, but he was still able to battle Sonny Stitt on his own terms. Ironically the last song that he ever recorded (just a short time before he was diagnosed with terminal cancer) was "Goodbye." ~ Scott Yanow
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: The Chronological Gene Ammons: 1951-1953

1. Ammons Boogie

2. Echo Chamber Blues

3. Sirocco

5. Hot Stuff

6. Them There Eyes

7. When The Saints Go Marching In

8. Archie

9. Undecided

10. Until The Real Thing Comes Along

13. I'll Walk Alone

14. Old Folks

15. Beezy

16. Somewhere Along The Way

17. Just Chips

18. Street Of Dreams

19. The Beat (Good Time Blues)

20. Travelin' Light

21. Red Top

22. Fuzzy

23. Stairway To The Stars

24. Jim Dawgs

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Track List: The Chronological Gene Ammons: 1950-1951

1. I Wanna Be Loved

2. I Can't Give You Anything But Love

3. Back In Your Own Backyard

4. Sweet Jennie Lou

5. La Vie En Rose

6. Seven Eleven

7. Jug Head Ramble

8. Can Anyone Explain

9. Don't Do Me Wrong

10. Prelude To A Kiss

13. When I Dream Of You

14. A Lover Is Blue

16. Jug

17. Wow!

18. Blue And Sentimental

21. Baby, Won't You Please Say Yes

22. Happiness Is A Thing Called Joe

23. It's You Or No One

x

Track List: Preachin'

1. Sweet Hour

2. Yield Not

3. Abide With Mme

4. Blessed Assurance

5. The Prayer

6. You'll Never Walk Alone

7. I Believe

8. Precious Memories

9. What A Friend

10. Holy Holy

11. The Light

x

Track List: Groovin' With Jug

1. Happy Blues

4. Hittin' The Jug

5. Exactly Like You

6. Groovin' With Jug

7. Morris The Minor

8. Hey You, What's That?

x

Track List: Boss Tenor

1. Hittin' The Jug

2. Close Your Eyes

3. My Romance

4. Canadian Sunset

5. Blue Ammons

6. Confirmation

7. Stompin' At The Savoy

x

Track List: Blue Gene

1. Blue Gene

2. Scamperin'

3. Blue Greens And Beans

4. Hip Tip

x

Track List: Gene Ammons And His All-Stars: Groove Blues

1. Ammon Joy

2. Groove Blues

3. Jug Handle

4. It Might As Well Be Spring

x

Track List: The Big Sound

1. Blue Hymn

2. The Real McCoy

3. Cheek To Cheek

4. That's All

x

Track List: Gene Ammons All Stars

1. Jammin' With Gene

2. We'll Be Together Again

3. Not Really The Blues

Comments

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Yet another great find on Pandora.
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Gene was, as the story goes, in need and had to hock his alto sax. Bob Solano, trumpet and flugelhorn ,my teacher at SUC Oneonta, NY dropped the cash and passed it to me.. Having only played the soprano C, I was thrilled to receive the alto--a new world of power and deep notes. Still have it. Has a halo for sure. Steve Rowan
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weteye54
can someone tell me why he was jailed from 62 to 69. Seems such an injustice unless he played the role of Mack The Knife
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One of my favorite albums in my Jazz collection is one featuring both Ammons and Sonny Stitt. It provides a great example of the competition between the two as well as the mutual respect of each. It literally COOKS!!!
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poppa_bear49
Ammon'...JOY . GREAT!!
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used to wonderful effect on FADING GIGILO soundtrack
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8133bjc commented Ammons is the greatest
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Estas músicas de antes son muy buenas e incomparable s
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working.eye
First heard Mr. Ammons on Nancy Wilson's Jazz Profiles show on NPR...
love at first hearing... Thanks, Pandora
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Love this guys sounds great to listen to. Great runs, love the way he plays. Keep um coming Pandora.
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I can't stand this kind of jazz. Makes me uncomfortabl e and have to turn it off.
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NOBODY LIKE JUG! THANK YOU GOD.
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I first heard his Divine sounds after
Finding a recording Someone left when
They moved out an apartment I was cleaning and I just out of pure curiosity
I played it and fell in hypnotic LOVE
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AMMON JOY. gogo JUG go
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My dad turned me on to jazz when I was 13yrs old. Gene Ammons was one of the
First record .his birthday is the same as mind. Gene has a hard life. The jug lives. On.
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HITTIN THE JUG
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so so many wonderful jazz guys and gals ! thank you god or mother nature , wow
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Why do you have the bio for Richard Groove Holmes when it should be Gene Ammons?
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Fabulous melloe music. Nice to learn about the musicians that were hot when I was 10. Am now 75 and loving it soo much. Phyllis
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jackcfeldman 1 9 4 8
Here we have the music of Gene Ammons and a biography for Richard Holmes. There are so many misplaced biographies, one wonders why Pandora even bothers.
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monroecliffo r d
LOVE IT
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markberres
Underappreci a t e d . I spread the word on Mr. Ammons whenever possible.
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the record i have is boss tenor
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i have a gene jug record on disc and i love it. his nickname was also a nickname of a classmate of mine e.ruth. hi school his name is jeremiah bradley and his nickname was jug sometimes jughead sometimes mia
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jug
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Leave a comment…
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Regardless of the bio misprint, its still good info! I own a ton of Gene Ammons music (wish I could have seen him live) the Jug sound is an infusion of the big sound of Ben Webster and the quiet sound of Coleman Hawkins with the lyricism of Stan Getz, put Jug with an organ and his side kick Sonny Stitt you got some music of the ages, he's turned soul-jazz on its ear!!
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I first heard Jug when I was 14. Got My Own is still my favorate Album.
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xman48_768
My dad had an after hours club in Chicago on the westside,340 0 w on Grenshaw.I learned about music in that basement and a few other things.When Jug came home in 1969 he was in concert at the Auditorium.I t was my first time seeing him.WOW.Musi c is and always be how I remember my life.
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pat1091
Bio Needs Fixin....??
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You still have the bio backwards..d a m n . . b u t man is Jug COOKING ..yes in deed!!!
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brotherbones t a y l o r
bio?
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Wrong Bio- Get Your S**t together
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Why is Holmes' biography instead of Ammons?
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Man, Jug is Chicago, all the way. With an organ group, he cooked like nobody's business. Long live the soul master.
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tcwilsonjr
Gorgeous tone!!!!!!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! ! Awesome
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I've never heard anything by "Jug" that I didn't like!
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This is not Gene Ammons
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Gorgeous tone, great lyricism, passionate soulful playing. A master of the tenor.
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The bio is wrong...Gene never got the respect he deserved...t h i s is just another example..I love this concept..but . . get a proof reader..Jug played beautifully. . .
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A forgotten monster of the tenor sax.The man lived a hard life thanks to uncle sam.Just awfull punishment for a life style
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If you love Gene, go out and buy "Angel Eyes", it's the best thing you'll ever hear!!!!!, I know because i have his entire catalog. I started listing to him when i was 8 years old and there is no one better.
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no one has better tone than G AMMONS on tenor not Stan Getz
says Andy Robinson
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listening to sarah vaughn,diana washington-- - - - - - - - j u s t loving it
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Get the bio right - Groove Holmes ain't Gene Ammons.
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GENE AMMONS WON ME OVER WHEN HE PLAYED MY FOOLISH HEART. WHEN I WAS IN HIGH SCHOOL. WE TRYED TO GET HIM FOR OUR PROM. BUT GO MILT BUCKNER SHAME SMILE.
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i haven't met anyone that doesn't dig jug. great sound.
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the jugmaster general
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tootyman
Great artist long overdue for greatness!
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This is the first time that I have heard this and it is just delicious!
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