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Johnny "Hammond" Smith

Actually nicknamed after his instrument, Johnny "Hammond" Smith was perhaps one of the more underrated soul-jazz organists of the style's heyday. Born John Robert Smith in Louisville, KY, on December 16, 1933, Smith began learning piano as a child, idolizing Bud Powell and Art Tatum early on. After moving to Cleveland, Smith heard jazz organ pioneer Wild Bill Davis and decided to switch instruments; he made his professional debut on the organ in 1958, around the same time he was working as an accompanist… Show more

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