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Jimmy Witherspoon


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Jimmy Witherspoon (August 8, 1920 - September 18, 1997) was an American singer.

James John (Jimmy) Witherspoon, also known by the nickname “Spoon”, was a versatile “blues shouter” who achieved commercial success and critical acclaim in the genres of blues, , and . His 1947 recording “Ain’t Nobody’s Business” was a hit in 1949 and became his signature song.

His date of birth is usually given as August 8, 1923, but some sources give the birth year as 1920, and more than one source gives the birth date as August 18, 1921, attributing the information to his son. Since he may have run away from home to Los Angeles, California, as early as 1935, the earlier dates seem more plausible. In a 1996 interview, he gave his age as seventy-four, which also corresponds with the 1921 date.
Jimmy Witherspoon was born in Gurdon (Clark County) Arkansas to Leonard Witherspoon, a Missouri Pacific Railroad brakeman, and Eva Tatum Witherspoon, a church pianist. The family was devoutly religious. His parents were members of the choir at their Baptist church.

He didn’t pursue music professionally until after his stint in the Merchant Marines in World War II. On his return to the Unites States in 1944, he replaced Walter Brown in Jay McShann’s band, and performed with Big Joe Turner and T-Bone Walker.


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  • granpubah

    And he DJ'd on Sunday nights for KMET. 2 hours of straight ahead blues.

    16 Apr 2012 Reply
  • IamFlood

    Dude sure makes multiplication soulful.

    24 Jan 2012 Reply
  • sebastiano_riva

    Great Style!

    18 Sep 2010 Reply
  • williamherbert

    Anyone have an mp3 copy of "Look at Granny Run Run"? I have his album "The Blues Singer" on vinyl and that's the best version of the song I've ever heard. I can't find the mp3 anywhere, not even iTunes. Anyone have it?

    2 Mar 2009 Reply
  • Ton87

    and really nice jazzy blues and rnb of course

    14 Sep 2008 Reply
  • Ton87

    fine moustache!

    14 Sep 2008 Reply
  • SYL2Oh

    First shout for Spoon this great singer who began at the age of blues shouters! It was shown in all genres of popular music, from jazz to soul, not to mention an incurtion into the world of rock.

    11 Jun 2008 Reply

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