Bill Doggett,Hammond Organ Jazz and Rock n Roll Legend was a critical pacesetter for Genre Crossover in Jazz and R&B.
WOW from 1965 is a classic of the crossover trendy Pop that distinguished his mid 1960s to mid 1970s era of his career.
Bill Doggett, renown for his multi Gold Record break thru 1956 crossover r&b instrumental mega hit, HONKY TONK set in motion the use of the jazz organ as an essential lead instrument for pop and jazz combos. Jimmy Smith, Groove Holmes, Jimmy Mc Griff all followed the door that Bill Doggett opened.
Bill Doggett is a legend and critical pacesetter in the important arena of creating a NEW BRANDING for genre CROSS OVER that would become a critical element in Jazz in the late 1960s and early 70s. Doggett’s r&b and pop FUSION of Organ Leading Jazz/Pop COMBO anticipated the Jazz Fusion and Electric Jazz trends of Miles Davis, Donald Byrd, Herbie Hancock, Chick Corea and others.
Influenced to pursue the Hammond B-2 organ as the lead instrument of a Jazz or Rhythm Combo by his Louis Jordan Tympany Five friend and colleague, Wild Bill Davis, the Jazz organ had not been showcased as a LEAD instrument vehicle in a jazz or pop combo creating its own momentum before the time of the Doggett and Davis..
ENTER The Dawn of Rock N Roll, Year 1956. Bil Doggett was the legendary Rhythm and Blues organist, jazz pianist and arranger who created the landmark Gold record, Billboard and Cash Box award winning 1956 Rock n Roll instrumental hit, Honky Tonk, Parts 1 and 2.
The history of how Honky Tonk came into being in a nightclub gig in Lima Ohio …is a great story recounted by Bill Doggett and his namesake and nephew, BIll Doggett II
HONKY TONK Pts 1 and 2 was later joined by Honky Tonk Part 3, a Vocal. Other hits of great note succeeded it including the underknown GEM of 1956, Peacock Alley and later Ram Bunk Shush
Bill Doggett is important in the annals of Harlem jazz history as both pianist and arranger for The Lucky Millinder Orchestra,1939-41 The Ink Spots, Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Jordan and Tympany Five 1949-51, Illinois Jacquet and Johnny Otis Orchestras in 1945-47
Bill Doggett worked with Ella in 1943-45 not only as her pianist but also as her Musical Director and arranger.
In 1945-46, Doggett played an important role as Recording Studio Pianist for two HOT NAMES in Jazz and early Rhythm and Blues: ILLINOIS JACQUET and JOHNNY OTIS.
Doggett was not only a recording session pianist along with Sir Charles Thompson for JOHNNY OTIS Excelsior Sessions, but also co wrote with Otis “Omaha Flash” which Johnny Otis Orchestra recorded for Excelsior on 78rpm Catalog# 152A
During these years 1945-47, DOGGETT also was recording session pianist for The LUCKY THOMPSON All Stars, also an Excelsior label band, based out of Los Angeles. Bill is credited on the label as pianist as well as composer on many of the Apollo Records 78rpm sessions of this period for ILLINOIS JACQUET All Stars.
In 1949, when Wild Bill Davis decided to go solo and leave Louis Jordan Tympany Five, Bill DOGGETT took the call and it is the meeting of the two BILLS via Louis Jordan, that The Doggett Organ odyssey was set in motion.
In 1960-62, in addition to his popular tours, Ella Fitzgerald, Della Reese recorded albums showcasing Bill Doggett, THE ARRANGER.
Notably, Ella’s 1962 Verve Lp, Rhythm is My Business featuring all Bill Doggett arrangements has long been viewed as one of her all time achievements.
Leaving King Records for Columbia and then Warner Brothers, Bill continued to record. Those Lps also have many memories that are as rich as those of the KING Records era.
In the late 1960s-early 1970s, Doggett recorded with James Brown a classic Funk record for the King label titled, Honky Tonk Hot Popcorn. The record became a Funk classic bringing two of King Records’ most famous recording artists of the late 1950s-early 1960s together for the first time