Magic Dick

Magic Dick
Magic Dick
Background information
Birth name Richard Salwitz
Also known as Magic Dick
Born 13 May 1945 (1945-05-13) (age 66)
New London, Connecticut
Genres Hard rock music, Chicago blues, Jazz
Occupations Musician,
Instruments Harmonica, trumpet, saxophone
Years active 1968 - Present
Labels Rounder Records,
Associated acts The J. Geils Band
Website Official Magic Dick website

Richard "Magic Dick" Salwitz (born May 13, 1945 in New London, Connecticut) was the harmonica player for The J. Geils Band. In addition to the harmonica, Salwitz plays the trumpet (the first instrument he learned) and saxophone. He attended Worcester Polytechnic Institute in Worcester, Massachusetts, where he met John "J" Geils and Danny Klein and became a founding member of The J. Geils Band in 1968.


In The J. Geils Band

Salwitz's harmonica playing became a major and distinctive element in the J. Geils Band's sound during their hard-rocking 1970s heyday. Critics have described his performance of "Whammer Jammer" on the J. Geils Band's live album Full House as proof of his remarkable harmonica skill.[1][2] To this day, aspiring harmonica players the world over attempt to emulate that musically challenging performance which several harmonicists have cited as the inspiration that started their interest in the instrument.[3]

Magic Dick's work on the six-minute jam "Detroit Breakdown" is a highlight of the J. Geils Band 1974 album Nightmares...and Other Tales from the Vinyl Jungle.[4]

On the track "You're the Only One" on the band's 1977 album Monkey Island, Magic Dick is found "impersonating Stevie Wonder at his most romantic" by one reviewer.[5]

After the J. Geils Band parted ways in 1985, Salwitz spent time working on a harmonica design of his own, which he labelled the "Magic Harmonica", a co-invention with Pierre Beauregard.


Album Cover: Little Car Blues (Copyright Rounder Records 1996)

In 1992, Salwitz re-united with his old friend and band mate J. Geils and formed the band Bluestime. Bluestime featured Steve Ramsey on drums, Jerry Miller on guitar, and Roy McCloud on bass. McCloud was later replaced by Michael "Mudcat" Ward, who played with the band for several years before leaving to pursue other interests. Ward was subsequently replaced by bassist John Turner. The band was a fusion of Chicago blues and classic jazz.

The band released two records on the Rounder Records label:

  • Bluestime (1994)
  • Little Car Blues (1996)

Bluestime toured heavily up to at least 2002, as both a solo act and as part of B.B. King's Bluesfest. It is believed[who?] the band is currently on hiatus.

Magic Dick recently contributed his harmonica playing and some vocals as part of a live recording called "Command Performance" by the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Revue featuring The Tommy Castro Band, Deanna Bogart, Ronnie Baker Brooks, and others. He toured as part of the Legendary Rhythm & Blues Revue on different Blues Cruises, and again on land-based shows during 2007-2008.[6]

See also


Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Dick Williams (magician) — For other people named Richard Williams, see Richard Williams. Dick Williams is a former television and radio presenter and magician who holds the record for hosting the longest running television magic show in the world. Under the name Mr Magic… …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Brooks (entertainer) — Dick Brooks (Ray Carter) (Dick Brookz) Born New York City Occupation Mystery entertainer, skeptic, producer, writer Website …   Wikipedia

  • Magic Towne House — Location 1026 Third Avenue, New York City, New York, USA Website Operating season Closed Rides 0 None total The Magic Towne House was a well known magic show s …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Cavett — Cavett in April 2010 Birth name Richard Alva Cavett Born November 19, 1936 (1936 11 19) (age 75) …   Wikipedia

  • Dick King-Smith — Born Ronald Gordon King Smith 27 March 1922(1922 03 27) Bitton, Gloucestershire, England, UK Died 4 January 2011(2011 01 04) (aged 88) Bath, Somerset, England, UK Pen name Dick King Sm …   Wikipedia

  • Dick DeVos — Born October 21, 1955(1955 10 21) Grand Rapids, Michigan Citizenship United States …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Ket — Self portrait of Dick Ket Born October 10, 1902(1902 10 10) Died …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Versace — (born April 16, 1940) is a former basketball coach and National Basketball Association executive. He s also the first person of Puerto Rican descent to have coached an NBA team.[1] Contents 1 Early years 2 NBA 3 …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Tracy (1990 film) — Dick Tracy Theatrical release poster Directed by Warren Beatty Produced by Warren Beatty …   Wikipedia

  • Dick Morrissey — Birth name Richard Edwin Morrissey Born 9 May 1940(1940 05 09) Died 8 November 2000(2000 11 08) (aged 60) Genres …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.