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Johnny Otis

Johnny Otis

18 articles

Audio interviews

Johnny Otis (1970)

Interview by Charlie Gillett, Rock's Backpages audio, August 1970

From Little Esther to Big Mama, "The Duke Ellington of Watts" takes us back to Central Avenue: the shysters, the talent, the clubs and record labels; the hits, the misses and the rip-offs.

File format: mp3; file size: 47.8mb, interview length: 49' 50" sound quality: ***

Johnny Otis (1990)

Interview by Steve Roeser, Rock's Backpages audio, 24 February 1990

'50s R&B King Otis talks about the songs: 'Willie and the Hand Jive', 'Hound Dog'; the artists: Little Esther, Etta James; his son Shuggie and music education; and he rails against the ravaged black ghettos, and the lie of "integration".

File format: mp3; file size: 31.4mb, interview length: 34' 17" sound quality: ****

List of articles in the library

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Johnny Otis: The New Johnny Otis Show

Review by Charlie Gillett, Record Mirror, 12 November 1969

"I'm gonna lay right here on this wall, And drink this beer, And watch her walk. You heard me call a while ...

Johnny Otis: Listen to the Lambs (W.W. Norton, NY)

Review by Bill Millar, Shout, December 1969

Johnny Otis is a 48-year-old Greek American, genetically white but black in every other conceivable respect. And if that’s difficult to comprehend, consider that, as ...

The Johnny Otis Show feat. Big Joe Turner, Eddie 'Cleanhead' Vinson et al: Basin Street West, San Francisco CA

Live Review by Philip Elwood, The San Francisco Examiner, 15 August 1970

An Old-Timer Hangs Loose ...

Johnny Otis: Doin' That Hand Jive With His Feet

Interview by John Morthland, Creem, November 1971

When the Johnny Otis Show appears on stage, it brings years and years of rhythm and blues history with it. ...

Johnny Otis, Platters, Jackie Wilson Reissue Albums

Review by Bob Fisher, Cream, February 1972

Johnny Otis: Pioneers of Rock: Vol. 2The Platters: The Best of the PlattersJackie Wilson: Greatest Hits ...

Johnny Otis: The Godfather of R&B

Retrospective by Bill Millar, Record Mirror, 29 July 1972

I THOUGHT Johnny Otis was suffering from over-exposure Dave Wolf who has drained his life savings to bring over Johnny's entire package thinks not. So ...

Johnny Otis, Shuggie Otis: 100 Club, London

Live Review by Charles Shaar Murray, New Musical Express, 2 September 1972

DO YOU FEEL all right? I mean, are you ready to put yo' hands together one time and say yeah? Louder, I wanna hear you ...

Johnny Otis

Profile and Interview by Don Snowden, New York Rocker, February 1982

IT'S BECOMING readily apparent that one salient characteristic of the first batch of Los Angeles bands (let's leave those lovable beach punks out of this) ...

Solomon Burke, Willie Garcia, Johnny Otis, Little Richard: Four Souls – From Music To The Ministry

Profile and Interview by Don Snowden, Los Angeles Times, 4 August 1985

SOLOMON BURKE looked more like Don Corleone surveying his domain in The Godfather than a preacher preparing to conduct a recent late-afternoon service. ...

Johnny Otis: Blues, R&B, Jazz

Live Review by Don Snowden, Los Angeles Times, 26 July 1986

"THE BARRELHOUSE used to be right down there on the northeast corner of Wilmington," Johnny Otis said Saturday afternoon, referring to the nightclub – a ...

Johnny Otis (1990) [transcript]

Audio transcript of interview by Steve Roeser, Rock's Backpages transcripts, 24 February 1990

This is a transcript of Steve's audio interview with Johnny. Listen to the audio of this interview. ...

Johnny Otis on the early days of R&B

Retrospective and Interview by Jeff Calvin, Blues Revue, April 2000

IN ADDITION to the various musical hats he's worn over the past half-century, Johnny Otis is a painter, a sculptor, a conservationist, a businessman, a ...

Johnny Otis: The Complete Savoy Recordings (Savoy Jazz)

Review by Jeff Calvin, Blues Revue, April 2000

THIS THREE-CD set, which spans the years 1945 to 1951, marks Johnny Otis not just as a great bandleader and prescient talent finder, but as ...

Johnny Otis at 80

Retrospective and Interview by James Maycock, MOJO, 2002

JOHNNY OTIS, the renaissance man of rhythm and blues, is somewhat ambivalent about entering his ninth decade. "I have two kinds of feelings," he concedes. ...

Various Artists: Good To The Last Drop – Ember Soul

Sleeve notes by Mike Atherton, Fantastic Voyage Records, June 2009

EMBER RECORDS was founded in London in 1960 by Jeffrey S. Kruger. A longtime jazz fan – he played piano in his own band Sonny ...

Johnny Otis, 1921-2012

Obituary by Kirk Silsbee, L.A. Weekly, 19 January 2012

BANDLEADER, drummer/pianist, talent scout, club owner, broadcaster, recording executive, writer, and recording artist Johnny Otis passed away Jan. 17 at the age of 90 in ...


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