|Biography of Jimmy Carl Black
Jimmy was born Feb. 1st 1938 as James Inkanish Jr. in El Paso Texas. When he was 1 year old, his mother married Carl Black, and they moved 20 miles
north of El Paso, to the little town of Anthony, Texas, New Mexico, where he spent the next 19 years. A wonderful childhood. He started playing the piano
at age 6, but didn't like it much. When he was twelve, he started to play the trumpet. He was solo first chair in the high school band.
He joined the U.S.A.F. in 1958 and started to play the drums because there weren't any trumpets in rock'n roll. So began a 49 year(counting this year)
stint behind the tubs. (He 's still there.)
He cut his first single in 1962 with a band called "The Keys" in Wichita, Kansas. He moved to California in 1964 and there he met Roy Estrada and Ray
Collins and started the band called "The Soul Giants". When their guitar player got drafted into the Army, Ray said he knew a guitar player named Frank
Zappa, so they auditioned him and hired him. One month later, Frank took over as leader of the rockin' combo and the band was called "The Mothers".
In 1965 The band played a lot of GO-GO clubs and in '65 met Herb Cohen, who became their manager. With new management, they started playing
places like The Action Club, The Whisky A-GO-GO, and The Trip on the Sunset Strip. They had added guitarist Henry Vestine of "Canned Heat" fame
(who deceased, God bless him) and while at the Whisky. The famous producer Tom Wilson heard the band playing "Trouble Coming Every Day" and we
had a record deal with MGM records.The day the contract was signed, Henry quit the band. Frank has just written "Who Are The Brain Police" and that
was too much for Henry. Anyway, when they got to the studio to start "Freak Out", Tom Wilson, who thought he had signed a blues band, was completely
signed a blues band, but some kind of weird band. He certainly was right about that. The band made a lot of albums in the sixties and in late '69 the band
disbanded. Unfortunately, it was the end of one of best bands ever.
The MOTHERS had the great pleasure to play with some of the greatest musicians of that era; Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, B.B. King, The Greatful Dead,
The Jefferson Airplane, Cream, The Doors, Joe Cocker, Arthur Brown, Chicago, Blood, Sweat and Tears, Albert King, Otis Rush, John Mayhal, The
Turtles, John Lee Hooker, Chuck Berry, The Howlin' Wolf, Capt. Beafheart, Ten Years Later, The Moody Blues, etc. He is proud to have met and jammed
with those people. The real legends of rock 'n roll.
In 1970 Jimmy formed the band Geronimo Black (named after his youngest son) with Bunk Gardner and some very fine musicians. They played around LA
for a couple of years before getting a record deal with MCA records. In the meantime in 1971 Jimmy went to England to make a movie called "200 Motels"
with Frank Zappa while making the movie he got a chance to meet and work with one of his favorite all time drummers Ringo Starr.
1973 He also worked with Flo and Eddie (The Turtles) Keith Moon and a group of very nice people, it was a very enjoyable experience since it was his first
In 1972 the record Geronimo Black came out to very nice reviews but the promotion wasn't what it should have been. So in '73 Jimmy moved back to his
home town of Anthony and made donuts For Winebel's Donuts. It wasn't a very good experience for a drummer that had been sort of a cult star. So he
formed a band called "The Valley Loboys" and cut out a single (a very rare little biscuit).
A couple of years later he changed the band to Big Sonny and The Loboys which put out one LP called "ln Heat". 1973 1980 In l980 Jimmy moved to Albq.
New Mexico where he put out a very rare 50's LP called "Clearly Classic" This was a clear plastic blobed shaped LP of which only 500 copies were made
Also that year he put out another album of previously unreleased material from Geronimo Black called "Welcome Back Geronimo Black".
That same year The Grandmothers formed and put out one LP on Rhino records called "A Mother Of An Anthology". 1982 Don Preston, Bunk Gardner
and Jimmy were the main guys in the band and they toured Europe for two years. One more record came out in 1982 on Rhino called "Looking up
Grannies Dress" Unfortunately the band split up and Jimmy moved to Austin Texas.
Jimmy was having trouble making a living as a musician so he hooked up with an old friend of his from the '60's days; Arthur Brown (The crazy World of)
and they started a painting company called "The Gentlemen of Color". 1982 1989 Meanwhile he had formed a blues band called "Jimmy Carl Black and
The Mannish Boys". They recorded a LP with a company called Amazing Records. While making that record, Jimmy and Arthur went in to the studio and
made a classic 60's R&B record called "Brown, Black and Blue" which came out in 1989 on Blue Wave Records (since released on CD with Voiceprint
Records, England). In 1988 Jimmy reformed the Austin Grandmothers. He was the only original Grandmother in the band, but that would change a few
In 1991 Jimmy went to Europe to play with Eugene Chadbourne at the famous Moers New Music Jazz Festival. It was a twelve piece experimental band with
Don Preston also in the band. That was the beginning of Jimmy's dream to move to Europe. In 1992 Jimmy moved to Vicenza, Italy with his wife, who was a
school teacher with the military. While there Jimmy contacted Muffin Records in Stuttgart, Germany and made a deal to release the Grandmothers new CD
called Dreams on Long Play which was recorded in Austin just before he moved to Europe.
1991 At that time Eugene had contacted Jimmy to start touring in Europe as a duo. So began the more than 100 shows; over a two year period of time of
the Jack and Jim Show. They recorded two CD's the first one on Fundamental Records called Locked in a Dutch Coffee shop The second one on Firefly
Records is a tribute to Capt Beefheart called Pachuco Cadaver.
1993 The Grandmothers new Cd was released in 1993 and the first European tour, with newly acquired Don Preston and Bunk Gardner, started a series
of tours to commence. 1994 The second tour the Grannnies changed guitar players and hired a very talented Sandro Oliva from Rome, Italy. In l994 the
Grannies released another CD with the new lineup called Who Could Imagine on Munich Records.After a much disputed law suite, I won't mention names,
the band disbanded.
1995 In l995 Jimmy started a blues band called "The Farrell & Black Band" and they have been playing together for almost five years and have two CD's
the first one released in 1996 is called "Cateract Jump" on Fritz Records. The new CD is called "Black Limousine" on Stormy Monday Records.
In 1995 Jimmy also started playing with a great band from Liverpool, England called the Muffin Men. He has done six tours with this band as a lead singer.
He's been on three CD's of the Muffin's the first is called "Say Cheese and Thank You"; the second is called "Frankincence" and the third called "MufFinZ"
and they are all on Muffin Records Productions. Those records are over a four year period of time. There is a new one coming out.
1996 Jimmy released a CD of old unreleased material in 1996 called "When do we Get Paid" on Cargo records. Jimmy is in the process of finishing a new
R. & B. CD with a great band from Salzburg, Austria. He also has plans to record a CD of American Indian music that he has been wanting to do for a long
time. Two dear friends of his are helping with the music. Essra Mohawk is writing the music to a song called "For the Little People" and Dawayne Bailey is
writing the music to a song called "Chief Old Fox". He is providing the lyrics.
The Grandmothers have a new CD coming out soon. A live recording from the Astoria Theater in London recorded on the 1998 tour with Bunk Gardner
(our first tour since the trouble). lt is a good one (see discography for more info) Jimmy hopes to record in the year 2000 a CD that has been his dream
from a long time. If he can find the financing, he will record with his three sons a CD of mostly his youngest son Geronimo's music. He plays guitar, Darrell
plays drums and Gary plays bongos, conga's, thimbles and trumpet. It will be an interesting project.
The new century was really great for Jimmy as he got more into the computer. He was learning about music production and the dream of forming his own
record company for release of rare material he´s been toting around for many years.
The year 2000 was the year Jimmy did the most touring he has ever done in his career. He did over 150 dates in Europe and the United States. In the
states the Grandmothers played 58 show´s in 66 days and travelled 17,200 miles and were in 42 states. They were promoting the new CD; "Eating The
Astoria". He did two tours with The Muffin Men and two tours with The Farrell/Black Band.
The year 2001 was also a busy time in Jimmy´s career as he released several CD´s in CD-Rom form on his new label, Inkanish Records. He did quite a bit
of touring, but not as heavy as the year before, as he was told by his doctor in October that he had a weak case of Leukemia. He did get together with
Eugene Chadbourne again and The Jack and Jim Show was in business again. Two CD´s resulted in the two small tours they did. "2001: A Spaced
Odysessy" and "Reflections and Experiences of Jimi Hendrix" are the CD´s that resulted in those tours. Also a new CD from The Muffin Men called "More
Songs From The Campfire".
In Oct. he joined forces with his new pardner Robert O´Haire and the official beginning of Inkanish Records was solidified. In March of this year the first two
releases from Inkanish Records is happening. Jimmy Carl Black and the X-tra Combo released the new CD "Mercedes Benz" and The Grandmothers new
CD "The Eternal Question". There is going to be two more releases before the end of the year but as of now, uncertain which ones it will be.
It looks like an interesting year, 2002, touring wise for Jimmy coming up. April-May-June will be with The Muffins in Europe, England, Scotland, and Ireland.
In Sept.-Oct. there is a tour with The e.u. Grandmothers featuring Candy Zappa on vocals that is going to be great but, unfourtantly that didn´t happen. He
did the winter tour with The Muffins again.
The third official release on Inkanish Records was in 2002 with the release of "Hamburger Midnight". This is the first recordings with Jimmy´s old pardner,
Roy Estrada, from the Mothers of Invention years. This great rhythm section hadn´t played together in 36 years. Mick Pini is on guitar for this recording.
the next year, 2003, was more touring with the Muffins and with Mick Pini. It is also the year that Jimmy started to recieve his Social Security check from the
Bush government because he turned 65 that Feb. 1st. He did a tour with "The Jack and Jim and Pat Show" of Holland and Scandinavia and they put out a
double CD called "We´ll Be Together Again" that was recorded on that tour. About three weeks later "The Jack and Jim Show" without Pat went to northern
Germany to do The Zappanalle 14 and we put out a wonderful CD from that show called "Live at the ZAPPANALLE 14". On the same festival Jimmy also
played with The Muffin Men and the whole festival was great. A few months later jimmy finished out the year with the annual winter tour of Germany with
The Muffins. He had to go into the hospital during that Muffins tour because he contracted Plurisy in his lungs. That was actually a blessing because he
finally quit smoking cigarette after smoking for 45 years. HURRAH!!!!!!
2004 was the year that Jimmy started his 25 treatments of Chimo therapy. Fortunately, it was a fairly weak one, meaning that he didn´t lose his hair or get
sick at his stomach although it did have some bad side affects on him. Nothing he can´t cope with. He did the annual spring tour with The Muffins that went
well. When he came back from that tour he found out that his distributing company for Inkanish Records had gone bankrupt and he not only lost a bunch
of money but also all the CD´s they had in stock. All in all, about 15.000 euros and that bankrupted Inkanish Records and put him out of business. The
biggest regret from that experience is for Jimmy´s pardner, Robert O´Haire, who had put the money up orginally. He says "I wish I would have done
something different in the work field like teaching or something like that". The music business SUCKS but he says he doesn´t know anything else. So it is
onward and upward and maybe when he dies his product´s will start to sell.
2005 was a good year touring and making more CD´s that don´t sell that good but were fun to do. Playing with The Muffins and Mick Pini. He did a great
tour with "The Jack and Jim and Pat Show" that took them to Germany, Slovenia, back to Freiburg, Germany, where they played a gig and also went into
the recording studio and recorded a CD entitled "Hearing is Believing" that will come out in March, 2007, on the Boxholder label. From there, they went to
play a free jazz festival in Nancy, France. Then to Amsterdam and finishing up in Brussels. The CD sounds GREAT. It is the best of all "The Jack and Jim
Show" CD that they have out. There are 17 CD´s available.
2006 started with the recording of the newest CD from Jimmy, Mick Pini, and Roddie Gilliard called "How Blue Can You Get?" that came out great. The
band did all cover tunes this time around just because they could. After that, the annual spring tour of the U.K with The Muffins. Jimmy then met Eugene
Chadbourne (Jack) in Brest, France for a wonderful 5 day festival that turned out great. In May, Jimmy and his lovely wife, Monika, went back to Nancy,
France, for the free jazz festival and the project "Chadfest". Jimmy played on the "Tribute to Johnny Paycheck" part of the fest and also the last night
"Monster" part of Chadfest. Eugene got to put 6 different shows together and invite 30 musicians from all over the world to do the Chadfest. It was truely
the wildest thing Jimmy ever did with him. Eugene, Pat, Jimmy, and the lovely Monika then went down south to Marseille, France and played another
festival that turned out great and then back home. Him and his wife had a very nice holiday. Jimmy did a U.K. tour in the summer with Mick Pini under the
name "The Jimmy Carl Black Band" to promote the new CD. It was Great!!!!. He has played several gigs in the fall with Pini and that is the update of his
biography. By the way, Greg Russo, is re-issuing "When Do We Get Paid" now and you can order it at http://www.crossfirepublications.com or conntact
Greg at GRusso2787@aol.com. Jimmy is about 85% done (finally) with his Autobiography "For Mothers Sake". It will be published in 2009. SOON!!!! I will
let everyone know when, OK.
|On Stage Live In El Paso Texas at King's X Bar El Paso
Geronimo Black plays a gig with papa Jimmy
Zappa Drummer Jimmy Carl Black: His last Gig at King's X