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Jim Esposito

Jim Esposito

A dubious distinction at best, Grace Slick once told Freelancer Jim Esposito he was "like the weirdest guy I ever met." Based in Florida and then Los Angeles, Esposito was published in Creem, Circus, Rock Magazine, Zoo World and Oui when it was owned by Playboy.

A student of Gay Talese and Tom Wolfe’s New Journalism, Esposito wrote a number of insightful profiles, was known for his "on the scene" backstage reports, which often revealed a glimpse into an artist’s personality rarely seen otherwise. His low key approach opened up artists such as Deep Purple’s Ritchie Blackmore and The Starship’s Grace Slick, who would not speak more than superficially to others.

Today Esposito is a widely read Fantasy Football correspondent for ffMastermind.com under the nom de plume Jimmy The Finger. The movie rights to his second novel, High Fliers, an adventure comedy about drug smugglers in Florida, was optioned by Lou Adler, who produced Up In Smoke and Rocky Horror. The novel is now available as an eBook at Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble.

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List of articles in the library by artist

Bachman Turner Overdrive: The Band That Laughs Last…

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, October 1974

THE BACHMAN-Turner Overdrive had just arrived backstage at the San Antonio Municipal Auditorium when the door to their dressing room burst open and seven extremely ...

Bachman Turner Overdrive, The Guess Who: Randy Bachman: Guess Who's Back Pages

Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1974

UNDERSTANDABLY, Bachman-Turner Overdrive is the first band ever to challenge the Guess Who's sovereign supremacy on their own Canadian turf, because, more than any other ...

Elvin Bishop: The Bourbon Street Irregulars

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, unpublished, April 1975

2009 note: CREEM flew me up to New Orleans to write a story on Elvin Bishop. Rejected this. Editor told me: "You didn't say why ...

Deep Purple, Ritchie Blackmore: Deep Purple: An Unpublished Interview with Ritchie Blackmore

Interview by Jim Esposito, unpublished, June 1973

2012 NOTE: This Q&A hails from circa June 1973, for an interview published in Creem in September that year. It broke the story about the ...

Black Sabbath: Volume 4

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, November 1972

IT REALLY freaks me out when somebody tries to tell me Vol 4 is the best thing Black Sabbath ever did. ...

Brownsville Station: The Right Track

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, June 1973

IF YES HAVE nightmares, they're probably about Brownsville Station. ...

Alice Cooper: Alice's New Snake – Yvonne Likes Her Work

Profile by Jim Esposito, Rock, July 1972

THERE ARE lots of rumors circulating the rock industry, especially about Alice Cooper. However, the one about Alice having to get rid of his old ...

Alice Cooper: Rehearsing at The Fillmore

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Circus, October 1972

2013 NOTE: My photographer Flash and I were in New York City on other business when we heard Alice Cooper was rehearsing his upcoming tour ...

Alice Cooper: The Mystery Tits

Report by Jim Esposito, Oui, June 1974

FIFTEEN FEET in front of me, Alice Cooper was doing his thing all over an elevated plywood stage. ...

Deep Purple: Machine Head

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, June 1972

2013 NOTE: When Machine Head shipped in '72 it was just another album, the latest release by an up-and-coming heavy metal band, stuck in the ...

Deep Purple: So Dreadfully Hot Here In The Colonies

Report by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, December 1972

"WHERE'S THE booze?" ...

Deep Purple's Ritchie Blackmore (1973)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, June 1973

Take the limo to Purple's West Palm Beach Arena show! Listen to Ritchie badmouth his bandmates! The rancour, the hatred, the splits, and the imminent departure of Ian Gillan and others!

File format: mp3; file size: 63.2mb, interview length: 1h 08' 58" sound quality: ***

Delbert & Glen: 1972 American Success Story

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, April 1973

IT'S GONNA BE mighty hard to write anything on Delbert & Glen without coming off like variation 39 of the classic American success story – ...

Derek & The Dominos: Derek and the Dominos: In Concert

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, March 1973

OFFHAND I'D venture to say there won't be many people disappointed with the new Derek and the Dominos. Perhaps the worst feature of the whole ...

Willie Dixon: It's Not the Singer, It's the Song

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, 1972

2013 NOTE: Hard to imagine today but even as late as 1972 the contributions of the old black blues masters were still not recognized by ...

Doobie Brothers: The Doobie Brothers: Toulouse Street

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, September 1972

THERE IS SOMETHING strangely deceptive about the Doobie Brothers. First of all, their name conjures up images of Maynard G. Krebs, the ultimate beatnik and ...

Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show: Dr. Hook & the Medicine Show: Belly Up (Columbia)

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, December 1973

WILL SUCCESS spoil Dr. Hook? Or will Dr. Hook spoil success? Such is the saga of the madcap Medicine Show – a study in reverse ...

Elf: Elf

Review by Jim Esposito, Rock, January 1973

2013 NOTE: I was into Deep Purple so when I noticed this debut album by a hitherto unknown group called Elf was produced by Roger ...

John Entwistle, Pete Townshend: Peter Townshend: Who Came First; John Entwistle: Whistle Rhymes

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1973

PERHAPS THE farthest-reaching cultural upheaval of our era is the formation of subcultures on every plane of society as an escape from the total immensity ...

Flash Cadillac and the Continental Kids

Profile and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, December 1973

YOU MIGHT FIND this hard to believe, but if it wasn't for a fifth of whiskey Flash Cadillac and the Continental Kids probably wouldn't be ...

Foghat: Scrabble Named Group

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, May 1973

2013 NOTE: A big Savoy Brown fan back in the day, much as I loved the group's transformation which produced Street Corner Talking I was ...

Humble Pie, Peter Frampton: Humble Pie: Street Rats; Peter Frampton: Frampton (both A&M)

Review by Jim Esposito, Creem, August 1975

FOUR ALBUMS already? Wow. It's been four albums since Peter Frampton was still in Humble Pie. Five albums since Rock On – the only album ...

Hall & Oates: Nutritious Music: Daryl Hall & John Oates

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1973

DARYL HALL, one half of Whole Oats, decided that Philadelphia can lay claim to one of the most innocuous music scenes in the entire country. ...

John Hammond: Singin' The Blues

Interview by Jim Esposito, Gainesville Sun, The, October 1974

JOHN HAMMOND is sitting on a black wooden box hunched over his guitar, which is balanced on a two-by-four suspended between two wooden chairs in ...

Howlin' Wolf: All The Man Wants To Do Is Sing The Blues

Report by Jim Esposito, Gainesville Sun, The, September 1974

Born Chester Burnett on June 10, 1910 on a plantation near Tupelo, Mississippi, Howlin' Wolf is a legendary black bluesman, ranking with the likes of ...

Humble Pie: Smokin'

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, June 1974

IF DETERMINATION has anything whatsoever to do with success, Humble Pie is destined to become one of the major groups of the decade. Since their ...

Humble Pie: Steve Marriott's Bad Old Days

Interview by Jim Esposito, Creem, May 1975

STEVE MARRIOTT laid back, looking like a spaced-out leprechaun, a cigarette in one hand and a bottle of Guinness in the other. ...

Humble Pie's Steve Marriott (1974)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, February 1974

The Pieman tells some splendid road stories; talks about recording their latest, Thunderbox; looks back at his schooldays and the Small Faces, and talks about his immediate plans.

File format: mp3; file size: 25.6mb, interview length: 27' 56" sound quality: ***

Jefferson Airplane, Jefferson Starship: Grace Slick Interviewed: Grass, Acid And The Starship

Interview by Jim Esposito, Oui, February 1977

GRACE SLICK, the original Acid Queen, was born Grace Wing October 30th, 1939, in Chicago, Illinois. Her father was an investment banker. Her mother, a ...

Jefferson Starship: Slow Orbiting

Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, December 1974

THE JEFFERSON Starship didn't hit Texas in a blaze of glory, they infiltrated it, with what had to be the most leisurely national tour by ...

Jefferson Starship: Take Me To Your Leader

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Creem, September 1975

"GET ME A blonde wig," says Gracie Slick over the background noise of traffic down Broadway and 52nd Street in Fun City. ...

Jefferson Starship (1974)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, November 1974

Grace Slick and pals talk about getting the band together, recording Dragon Fly and being on the road, plus stuff about their individual musical histories.

File format: mp3; in 6 parts, total file sizes: 100.2mb, total interview length: 1h 49' 29" sound quality: ***

Jo Jo Gunne: The Tour Goes On And On

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, October 1972

JAY FERGUSON stood in the lobby of the auditorium where Jo Jo Gunne were playing, beneath a huge neon-lit marquee that read "Hockey Game Tues ...

Jo Jo Gunne, Savoy Brown: Jo Jo Gunne and Savoy Brown in Concert

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, 1972

MAYBE THE auditorium's marquee had the right idea by posting "Rock Concert" for all the world to see while supplying absolutely no details whatsoever – ...

Lynyrd Skynyrd: The 100 Proof Blues

Report by Jim Esposito, Creem, October 1975

2009 note: In the Summer of '75 The Editors of Creem decided to do a Special Report on Rock 'n Roll and booze. They called ...

Lynyrd Skynyrd's Ronnie Van Zant (1974)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1974

The southern rock icon on 'Free Bird'; recording the first three albums; the band's poor backgrounds; and thoughts about music in general and guitar players in particular.

File format: mp3; file size: 27.4mb; Interview length: 29' 56"; sound quality: **

Harvey Mandel: Fluctuating Intensity

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, November 1972

HARVEY MANDEL is a conversationalist of flucuatingly intensities. Sometimes he's right with you, sometimes he's way ahead, and other times he spaces out and you ...

Neil Merryweather, Rush: Rush: Rush; Neil Merryweather: Space Rangers

Review by Jim Esposito, Creem, February 1975

FIRST THERE WAS English Rock 'n' Roll! Then there was Southern Blues! Now, from Mercury Records, those swell folks who brought you Bachman-Turner Overdrive, we ...

Poco: A Good Feeling To Know

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, December 1972

IT'S VIRTUALLY impossible to do anything even resembling country rock nowadays without being compared to Poco in some aspect or another, because if Poco didn't ...

Python Lee Jackson, Rod Stewart: Python Lee Jackson: In A Broken Dream (GNP-Crescendo)

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, October 1972

THERE'S OBVIOUSLY more of a story behind Python Lee Jackson than GNP Crescendo would care to tell, probably because they're just as caught up in ...

Quicksilver Messenger Service: Quicksilver: Trouble Ahead, Trouble Behind

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, November 1972

ACCORDING TO LEAD guitarist Gary Duncan Quicksilver is going through a "transitory period," mainly because of all the trouble they've been having with their label. ...

Savoy Brown and Them Changes

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, November 1972

2012 NOTE: I was young, probably a bit too much of a fan, and just looking to do a superficial, light-hearted story, but we now ...

Savoy Brown: Lion's Share

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1973

TALK ABOUT a programmed response: why is it that every time you pick up a new Savoy Brown album, the first thing you do is ...

Bob Seger: Live at the Highway 5 Screen (Air-Conditioned) Drive-In Movie Theater

Report by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, July 1973

WHEN YOU really stop to, think about it, a drive-in theatre is the perfect place to see Bob Seger. After all, he is the hallowed ...

Grace Slick (1976)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1976

Interviewed at the Airplane house in San Francisco, the chanteuse of psychedelia rambles in splendid style on her early days in the Great Society, writing White Rabbit, drugs and drink and much more.

File format: mp3; file size: 77.2mb, total interview length: 1h 24' 21" sound quality: ***

Jim Stafford: The Gators Growl in Hog Town

Profile and Interview by Jim Esposito, Page One, December 1974

JIM STAFFORD stepped up to the microphone on the 15-yard line of the University of Florida's football field, pinpointed at the vortex of four spotlights ...

Donna Summer: The Great Rocking Orgasmic Renaissance of AM Radio

Special Feature by Jim Esposito, Oui, September 1976

(Which Considers The Question: Is Donna Summer Coming Or Going?) ...

Donna Summer (1976)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1976

Disco Diva Donna on living and working in Europe; meeting Pete Bellotte and Giorgio Moroder; her family background in Boston and being a rebellious schoolkid, and tells us all about the making of the epochal 'Love To Love You Baby'.

File format: mp3; file size: 66.4mb, interview length: 1h 12' 28" sound quality: ***

Ten Years After: Alvin Lee & Company

Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1973

ONE OF THE most eagerly awaited albums lately was Alvin Lee & Company. "That's old material that was recorded a long time ago," Alvin stated ...

Trapeze Swings Past

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, February 1973

GLENN HUGHES, bass player and vocalist, and drummer David Hollan – two thirds of Trapeze – sat side by side on a double bed in ...

T. Rex: Marc Bolan's Optimistic Overlook

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, November 1972

"A NICE THING happened in New Jersey," related Marc Bolan with a gleam in his eye. He pauses momentarily and the small group of press ...

Loudon Wainwright III: Attempted Moustache (Columbia)

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, January 1974

MOST PEOPLE seem to think Loudon Wainwright III is some kind of a folksinger, about halfway between Bob Dylan and Martin Mull in the general ...

Wet Willie: Keep On Smilin'

Review by Jim Esposito, Creem, September 1974

THE ONLY THING missing from Keep On Smilin' is one of Capricorn's "Support Southern Music" buttons on the jacket of that blind old black beggar ...

Johnny Winter: Saints And Sinners

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, March 1974

YOU'D THINK that anyone who's paid as many dues as Johnny Winter would just wanna sit back and collect residuals, now wouldn't you? Not Johnny, ...

Johnny Winter: Still Alive And Well

Review by Jim Esposito, Zoo World, Spring 1973

BY NOW EVERYONE must know the reason it took Johnny Winter such a long time to get around to recording this album was not simply ...

List of genre pieces

Ben Gansell, Freelance Piano Tuner

Report and Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock, May 1973

BEN GANSELL is a stocky, heavy-set man of medium height with a full head of bristly hair which he keeps conscientiously trimmed just a shade ...

Casablanca Records' Neil Bogart (1976)

Interview by Jim Esposito, Rock's Backpages Audio, 1976

The Casablanca Records mogul gives his record industry background, selling bubblegum, radio censorship, big-sellers Kiss and, extensively, about Donna Summer and her disco/sex smash 'Love To Love You Baby'.

File format: mp3; file size: 42.8mb, interview length: 46' 45" sound quality: ***

Rock 'n' Roll Never Forgets

Retrospective by Jim Esposito, Classic Rock, September 2013

IN THE FUTURE the 1960s will be remembered as another Renaissance, an aesthetic revolution when art flourished. Only this time instead of white marble sculptures ...

Mardi Gras: The Complete Mardi Gras Primer

Guide by Jim Esposito, Creem, March 1974

NEW ORLEANS – a party town without peer – annually hosts one solid week of rampant, unadulterated Bachanalia. It's called Mardi Gras. Sort of an ...

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