picture of Johnny Hammond Smith
Johnny "Hammond" Smith
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, a.k.a. Johnny Smith or Johnny Hammond, was born John Robert Smith in Louisville/KY December 1933. He began his musical training at age 13 only and had piano lessons. Later, he toured as pianist with the Kenny Hale Big Band and the group of sax player Paul Williams.
 
In 1948, he for the first time had heard Will Bill Davis playing the Hammond organ. Johnny was amazed about the sound of this instrument. But it was in 1957 only, that he decided to switch to the organ. It is said, that at that time Erroll Garner's piano style influenced Johnny's organ style. By 1958, he formed his own group and went on the road. It was Eddie "Lockjaw" Davis who discovered Johnny as a great organist. That led to a long lasting partnership with Prestige Records until 1971, when he changed to CTI.
 
Many well known jazz artists played together with Johnny, such as Houston Person, Earl Edwards, Floyd Smith, Wally Richardson, Jimmy Lewis, Virgil Jones, Thornel Schwartz, John Abercrombie, Grover Washington jr, George Benson, Ron Carter, and many more. Johnny got very much ahead when he began to accompany singer Nancy Wilson. He even wrote a song for her ("Quiet Fire").
 
In his later years, Johnny also worked as a music teacher. From 1987, he gave lessons at Cal oly Pomona. Johnny passed away on 04 June 1997.
contact:
fan homepage: www.johnnyhammondsmith.com

 

Discography
Have You Heard Johnny Smith (a.k.a. Imagination)
Arrow Records LP 1200
released 1958
recorded 1958 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny Smith, organ
George Tucker, bass
Leo Stevens, drums
Thornel Schwartz, guitar
All Soul
New Jazz Records 8221
released 1959
recorded September 1959 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
George Tucker, bass
Leo Stevens, drums
Thornel Schwartz, guitar
That Good Feelin'
Prestige New Jazz 8229
released 1959
recorded November 1959 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Thornel Schwartz, guitar
George Tucker, bass
Leo Stevens, drums
Taking Care Of Business
Prestige New Jazz 8233
released 1960
recorded March 1960 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Oliver Nelson, alto sax, tenor sax
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Lem Winchester, vibes
George Tucker, bass
Roy Haynes, drums
Talk That Talk
Prestige New Jazz 8241
released 1960
recorded April 1960 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Oliver Nelson, tenor sax
George Tucker, bass
Arthur Taylor, drums
Ray Barretto, conga
Gettin' The Message
Prestige PR 7217
released 1961
recorded October 1960 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Lem Winchester, vibes
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Wendell Marshall, bass
Bill Erskine, drums
Stimulation!
Prestige PR 7203
released 1961
recorded February 1961 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Freddie McCoy, vibes
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Wendell Marshall, bass
Leo Stevens, drums
Cooks With Gator Tail (a.k.a. Good 'Nuff)
Prestige PRST 7239
released 1962
recorded June 1962 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Willis Jackson, tenor sax
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Leo Stevens, drums
Black Coffee
Riverside 9422
recorded live November 1962 at the Monterey Club, New Haven, CT/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Houston Person, tenor sax
Leo Stevens, drums
Seldon Powell, tenor sax
Look Out!
Prestige New Jazz 8288
released 1963
recorded January 1962 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Seldon Powell, tenor sax
Clement Wells, vibes
Wally Richardson, guitar
Leo Stevens, drums
Mr. Wonderful
Riverside 9466
released 1963
recorded 1963 in New York City/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Houston Person, tenor sax
Leo Stevens, drums
Angel Eyes
Prestige PR 7369
released 1965
recorded June 1960 & September 1962 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Gene Ammons, tenor sax
Frank Wess, tenor sax, flute
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Doug Watkins, bass
Art Taylor, drums
The Stinger
Prestige PR 7408
released 1965
recorded May 1965 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Houston Person, tenor sax
Earl Edwards, tenor sax
Floyd Smith, guitar
John Harris, drums
The Stinger Meets The Golden Thrush
Prestige PR 7464
released 1966
recorded January 1966 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Byrdie Green, vocals
Otis Sutton, alto sax
Houston Person, tenor sax
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Leo Stevens, drums
Open House
Riverside 9482
released 1966
recorded 1963 in USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Bob Cranshaw, bass
Ray Barretto, congas
Leo Stevens, drums
Seldon Powell, tenor sax, flute
Thad Jones, trumpet, cornet
Opus De Funk
Prestige PR 7420
released 1966
recorded February/May 1961 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Freddie McCoy, vibes
Eddie McFadden, guitar
Wendell Marshall, bass
Leo Stevens, drums
Love Potion #9
Prestige PR 7482
released 1967
recorded September 1966 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Eddie Diehl, guitar
John Harris, drums
Gene Walker, tenor sax
Virgil Jones, trumpet
Gettin' Up (a.k.a. Ebb Tide)
Prestige PR 7494
released 1967
recorded March 1967 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Virgil Jones, trumpet
Houston Person, tenor sax
Thornel Schwartz, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
John Harris, drums
A Little Taste
Riverside 9496
released 1967
recorded 1963-1964 in New York City/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Luis Taylor, drums
Houston Person, tenor sax
Virgil Jones, trumpet
Soul Flowers
Prestige PR 7549
released 1968
recorded September 1967 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Earl Edwards, tenor sax
Houston Person, tenor sax
Wally Richardson, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
John Harris, drums
Richard Landrum, conga
Dirty Grape
Prestige PR 7564
released 1968
recorded January 1968 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Houston Person, tenor sax
Earl Edwards, tenor sax
Wally Richardson, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
John Harris, drums
Richard Landrum, conga
Sister Byrdie!
Prestige PR 7574
released 1968
recorded March/April 1968 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Byrdie Green, vocals
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Wally Richardson, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
John Harris, drums
Lucille Burgess, chorus
Ann Craig, chorus
Lynn Daniels, chorus
Nasty!
Prestige PR 7588
released 1968
recorded June 1968 in New York City/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Houston Person, tenor sax
John Abercrombie, guitar
Grady Tate, drums
Soul Talk
Prestige PR 7681
released 1969
recorded May 1969 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Rusty Bryant, alto sax Wally Richardson, guitar Bob Bushnell, bass Bernard Purdie, drums
The Best Of Johnny "Hammond" Smith
Prestige PR 7705
released 1969
recorded various dates and places
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
various artists
Black Feeling!
Prestige PR 7736
released 1970
recorded December 1969 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Virgil Jones, trumpet
Rusty Bryant, tenor sax
Leo Johnson, tenor sax
Wally Richardson, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
Bernard Purdie, drums
Here It 'Tis
Prestige PR 10002
released 1970
recorded September 1970 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Houston Person, tenor sax
James Clark, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
Bernard Purdie, drums
What's Going On
Prestige PR 10015
released 1971
recorded April 1971 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Grover Washington jr, tenor sax
James Clark, guitar
Ted Dunbar, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
Eddie Gee, drums
Ernie Royal, trumpet
Robert Prado, trumpet
Garnett Brown, trombone
Richard Landry, tenor sax
Babe Clarke, baritone sax
Breakout
KUDU KU-01
released 1971
recorded June 1971 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Hank Crawford, alto sax
Johnny Williams, bass
Billy Cobham, drums
Eric Gale, guitar
Airto Moreira, percussion
Grover Washington, tenor sax
Danny Moore, trumpet
George Benson, guitar
Stanley Turrentine, tenor sax
Freddie Hubbard, trumpet
Wild Horses Rock Stead
KUDU KU-04
released 1972
recorded November 1971 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ, piano
Ron Carter, bass
Billy Cobham, drums
Bob Mann, guitar
Eric Gale, guitar
George Benson, guitar
Melvin Sparks, guitar
Airto Moreira, percussion
Omar Clay, percussion
Grover Washington jr, alto sax, tenor sax
Harold Vick, alto sax, tenor sax
Pepper Adams, baritone sax
Wayne Andre, trombone
Al DeRisi, trumpet, flugelhorn
and many more
California Concert
CTI Records 342-501-001-002
released 1972
recorded July 1971 at the Hollywood Palladium in Hollywood, CA/USA
George Benson, guitar
Freddie Hubbard, trumpet
Hubert Laws, flute
Stanley Turrentine, tenor sax
Hank Crawford, alto sax
Johnny Hammond, organ, piano
Ron Carter, bass
Billy Cobham, drums
Airto, percussion
The Prophet
KUDU KU-10
released 1973
recorded November 1972 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ, piano
Ron Carter, bass
Billy Cobham, drums
Eric Gale, guitar
Jerry Dodgion, tenor sax
Maceo Parker, tenor sax
Cecil Payne, baritone sax
Pepper Adams, baritone sax
Dick Griffin, trombone
Wayne Andre, trombone
Tony Studd, bass trombone
John Eckert, trumpet, flugelhorn
Jon Faddis, trumpet, flugelhorn
Marvon Stamm, trumpet, flugelhorn
Airot Moreira, percussion
Andrew Primus, steel drums
Carl Carldwell, vocals
Lani Groves, vocals
Tasha Thomas, vocals
Higher Ground
KUDU KU-16
released 1974
recorded October/November 1973 in Englewood Cliffs, NJ/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Hank Crawford, alto sax
Joe Henderson, tenor sax
Wayne Andre, trombone
Tony Studd, trombone
Paul Faulise, bass trombone
Alan Raph, bass trombone
Jon Faddis, trumpet
John Frosk, trumpet
Alan Rubin, trumpet
Marvin Stamm, trumpet, flugelhorn
Ray Alonge, French horn
Romeo Penque, oboe, alto flute
Eddie Daniels, clarinet
Eli Carmen, bassoon
George Benson, guitar
Bob James, piano, organ
Ron Carter, bass
Jack DeJohnette, drums
Steve Gadd, drums
Phil Kraus, percussion
Ralph McDonald, percussion
Gambler's Life
Salvation Records SAL 702 S1
released 1974
recorded June 1974 in Hollywood, CA/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, piano, synthesizer
Henry Franklin, bass
Tony Dumas, bass
Fonce Mizell, clavinet, trumpet
King Errisson, congas
Fritz Wise, drums
Harvey Mason, drums
John Rowin, guitar
Mel Bolton, guitar
Melvin Ragin, guitar
Stephanie Spruill, percussion, vocals
Jerry Peters, piano
Carl Randell jr, sax
Larry Mizell, synthesizer
Al Hail, trombone
Gears
Milestone M-9062
released 1975
recorded July 1975 in Berkeley, CA/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ, piano, synthesizer
Julian Priester, trombone
Hadley Caliman, tenor sax
Roger Glenn, flute, vibes
Michael White, violin
Jerry Peters, piano
Fonce Mizell, clavinet
Larry Mizell, solina
John Rowin, guitar
Craig McMullen, guitar
Chuck Rainey, bass
Harvey Mason, drums
Kenneth Nash, percussion
Forever Taurus
Milestone M-9068
released 1976
recorded March 1976 in Berkeley, CA/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, Hammond organ, piano, synthesizer
Lee Ritenour, guitar
Sonny Burke, piano, clavinet
Marlo Henderson, synthesizer
Henry Davis, bass
Scott Edwards, bass
Curtis Robertson, bass
James Gadson, drums
Bill Summers, percussion
horns section
string section
CTI Summer Jazz At The Hollywood Bowl
CTI Records CTI 7076
released 1977
recorded live July 1972 in Hollywood, CA/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
George Benson, guitar
Ron Carter, bass
Hank Crawford, alto sax
Jack DeJohnette, drums
Deodato, Fender Rhodes
Joe Farrell, tenor sax
Freddie Hubbard, trumpet, flugelhorn
Milt Jackson, vibes
Bob James, Fender Rhodes
Hubert Laws, flute
Airto Moreira, percussion, conga
Esther Phillips, vocals
Stanley Turrentine, tenor sax
Grover Washington jr - alto sax
Storm Warning
Milestone M-9076
released 1977
recorded 1977 in USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, keyboards, synthesizers
Larry Farrow, clavinet
Carol Kaye, guitar
Ron Carter, bass
Ndugu Leon Chancler, drums
Bill Summers, percussion, congas
Don't Let The System Get You
Milestone M-9083
released 1978
recorded August/October 1977 in Los Angeles, CA/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, keyboards, vocals
Byron Miller, bass
Tony Dumas, bass
Jack Perry, clavinet
Larry Farrow, clavinet
Sheila Escovedo, congas
Leon Ndugu Chancler, drums
Al McKay, guitar
Dan Papaila, guitar
David T. Walker, guitar
Mel Bolton, guitar
Bill Summers, percussion
Al Hail jr, percussion, trombone
Hadley Caliman, sax
Jazz Organ Summit
Cannonball CBD 27102
recorded May 1997 in Chicago, IL/USA
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, Hammond B-3 organ
Frank Catalano, tenor sax
Mike Allemana, guitar
Terry Morrisette, drums
Legends Of Acid Jazz
Prestige PRCD 24177-2
compilation
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
Rusty Bryant, alto sax
Rusty Bryant, tenor sax
Leo Johnson, tenor sax
Rusty Bryant, sax
Virgil Jones, trumpet
Wally Richardson, guitar
Bob Bushnell, bass
Jimmy Lewis, bass
Bernard Purdie, drums
The Soulful Blues
Prestige PRCD 24244-2
originally released as Ebb Tide (PR 7494) and Nasty (PR 7588)
Johnny Hammond Smith, organ
Houston Person, tenor sax
Virgil Jones, trumpet
John Abercrombie, guitar
Thornel Schwartz, guitar
Jimmy Lewis, bass
Grady Tate, drums
John Harris, drums
Essential Organ Masters
Master Classics Record
compilation
Johnny "Hammond" Smith, organ
further details unknown

 

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