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Bull Moose Jackson

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Benjamin Clarence “Bull Moose” Jackson (April 22, 1919 – July 31, 1989) was an American blues and rhythm & blues singer and saxophonist, who was most successful in the late 1940s and early 1950s.

Born in Cleveland, Ohio, United States, he learned to play the saxophone and started his first band, The Harlem Hotshots, while he was still in high school. In 1943, he was recruited as a saxophonist by bandleader Lucky Millinder, and the musicians in Millinder’s band gave him the nickname “Bull Moose” for his appearance. He began singing when required to stand in for Wynonie Harris at a show in Texas.

Millinder encouraged Jackson to sign a solo contract with Syd Nathan of King Records to play rhythm and blues. He first recorded in his own right in 1946, with “I Know Who Threw the Whiskey”, an answer song to Millinder’s “Who Threw the Whiskey in the Well”. The following year, his recording of “I Love You, Yes I Do” reputedly became the first R&B single to sell a million copies, holding the #1 spot on the R&B chart for three weeks and crossing over to the pop chart, where it made #24.

He formed his own group, The Buffalo Bearcats, and over the next five years recorded in a wide variety of musical styles, including both romantic crooning and bawdy jump blues. Other big hits in 1948 included the double-sided hit “All My Love Belongs to You” / “I Want a Bowlegged Woman”, and his biggest R&B chart hit, “I Can’t Go On Without You”, which stayed at # 1 on the R&B chart for eight weeks. He also made an appearance in the 1948 film, Boarding House Blues, with Millinder.

In 1949, he covered “Why Don’t You Haul Off and Love Me” a song that been successful for Wayne Raney as well as several country and western performers.

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  • asiacraz

    Check out the Aerosmith version too - only available on their box set. This guy rocks!

    27 Sep 2010 Reply
  • BigxBadxWorld

    I wish I'd been around to experience first-hand the awesomeness that is Bull Moose Jackson - and all other similar artists. :B

    16 Aug 2009 Reply

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