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Pete Johnson

Pete Johnson was one of the three great boogie-woogie pianists (along with Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis) whose sudden prominence in the late '30s helped make the style very popular. Originally a drummer, Johnson switched to piano in 1922. He was part of the Kansas City scene in the 1920s and '30s, often accompanying singer Big Joe Turner. Producer John Hammond discovered him in 1936 and got him to play at the Famous Door in New York. After taking part in Hammond's 1938 Spirituals to Swing Carnegie Hall concert in 1938, Johnson started recording regularly and appeared on an occasional basis with Ammons and Lewis as the Boogie Woogie Trio. He also backed Turner on some classic records. Johnson recorded often in the 1940s and spent much of 1947-1949 based in Los Angeles. He moved to Buffalo in 1950 and, other than an appearance at the 1958 Newport Jazz Festival, he was in obscurity for much of the decade. A stroke later in 1958 left him partly paralyzed. Johnson made one final appearance at John Hammond's January 1967 Spirituals to Swing concert, playing the right hand on a version of "Roll 'Em Pete" two months before his death. ~ Scott Yanow
full bio

Selected Discography

x

Track List: Pete Johnson 1938-1939

1. Goin' Away Blues

2. Roll 'Em, Pete

3. Boo-Woo

4. Home James

5. Shuffle Boogie

6. Lone Star Blues

7. B & O Blues

8. How Long, How Long

9. Climbin' And Screamin'

10. Buss Robinson Blues

11. Pete's Blues

12. Let 'Em Jump

13. Pete's Blues No. 2

14. Cherry Red

15. Baby, Look At You

16. Lovin' Mama Blues

17. Cafe Society Rag

18. Boogie Woogie

19. Vine Street Bustle

20. Some Day Blues

x

Track List: Central Avenue Boogie

1. Pete Kay Boogie

2. Central Avenue Drag

3. Margie

4. 66 Stomp

5. Minute Boogie

6. Yancey Street Boogie

7. Swanee River Boogie

11. Hollywood Boogie

12. Plain Food Blues

13. Plain Food Blues

14. Wiley's Boogie

Comments

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Definetly a unique piano player, really knows how to get real music out there. unlike the noise that's played today!
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Blueprint
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There must be at least 2500+ boogie piano players in the country....a n d they all have their own distinctive sound.....Ho w do they do that? Love it..... It stirs the body and soul.
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Ooohhhh...he ' s good!
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God
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creolelorrai n e d u l e c h e
where was he born and raised///i know he didn't get that much soul from l.a., n.y., or k.c.....gott a be from mis'sippi or louisiana... m a y b e texas or alabama
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never heard of or heard anything from this guy. first impression.. . . simple, but great. guess thats why they say less is more
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Wow!!!
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thepainter2
jammin boogie great artist
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ROLL EM!! MAN this is why I want to learn piano!!
Report as inappropriate
THIS is classic Pete Johnson.

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