Jimmy Jones (singer)

Jimmy Jones (singer)

Jimmy Jones (born 2 June 1937, Birmingham, Alabama) is an African American, singer/songwriter who moved to New York City while a teenager.


Jones joined a doo-wop group named The Berliners in 1954. They later changed their name to Sparks Of Rhythm. In 1955 he wrote "Handy Man" which was recorded by the Sparks Of Rhythm in 1956 (after Jones left the group).

After recording with other groups, he went solo and in 1959 he teamed up with Otis Blackwell who reworked "Handy Man" which Jones recorded on the MGM record label, Cub subsidiary. When the flute player did not show up for the session, Blackwell whistled on the recording. "Handy Man" went to #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 in 1960.

In 1959 the song was released, and Jimmy Jones had his first U.S. and UK hit single with the free-running, and all-time classic track. Later, in 1960 his recording "Good Timin'", went to Number 1 on the UK Singles Chart and #3 in the U.S. His subsequent career was low key, although it included three more UK chart entries in the following twelve months. The song, "Handy Man", which introduced a rock falsetto singing style to the British audience, provided later hits for Del Shannon and James Taylor.

Although Jones had but two Top 40 hits, both smash million sellers, he was able to keep active in the music industry as both a songwriter and recording artist, making personal appearances when he wanted to. His importance on singing can not be overstated as Del Shannon has cited both Jones and The Ink Spots as an influence. Other singers who later used falsetto included Lou Christie and Barry Gibb, the latter who has cited Shannon in turn as an influence for his disco vocalizations with the Bee Gees.

Jones released "Grandma's Rock & Roll Party" in the 1990s on CD, perhaps in part to his popularity in the UK Northern Soul music circle, which included new versions of "Handy Man" and "Good Timin'".

External links

* [http://home.att.net/~marvy42/Jimmyjones/jjones.html The Jimmy Jones Story]

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