Still missing talent scout, record producer, civil rights activist, & music critic John Hammond

July 9, 2017

July 10th marks the 30th anniversary 

of the death of  American record producer 

civil rights activist and music critic

from the 1930’s to the early 1980’s

John Henry Hammond II


In his service as a talent scout

John Hammond

became one of the most influential figures

in 20th century popular music


John Hammond was instrumental

in sparking or furthering

numerous musical careers of 

Bob Dylan

Bruce Springsteen 

Benny Goodman

Harry James, Charlie Christian

Billie Holiday

Count Basie

Teddy Wilson, Big Joe Turner, 

Pete Seeger, Babatunde Olatunji

Aretha Franklin

George Benson, Freddie Green, 

Leonard Cohen, Arthur Russell, 

Jim Copp, Asha Puthli

Stevie Ray Vaughan

John Hammond was one of the original men

to racially integrate

the American music industry


Before the Civil Rights Act passed

Tom Wilson

an African American who replaced Hammond

as Bob Dylan's record producer


There was no uproar

in regards to this replacement !


In addition to Dylan's first electric albums

Tom Wilson

helmed key LPs by

Simon & Garfunkel, The Velvet Underground

Frank Zappa

and jazz pianist Cecil Taylor


Hammond is also largely responsible

for the music revival of delta blues artist

Robert Johnson to Columbia Records


Hammond also produced

Bessie Smith

Billie Holiday


John Hammond's Legacy

"John's Idea"

originally titled

"I May Be Wrong It's John's Idea"

is a tribute to John Hammond

written by Count Basie


John Hammond

received the Grammy Trustees Award 

for being credited with co-producing

a Bessie Smith reissue in 1971


John Hammond

was inducted to the 

Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame in 1986


Hammond's son - John P. Hammond

became an American Blues musician


Guinness featured John Hammond

in its UK 2016 advertising campaign 




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