Jerry Goodman

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Goodman performing in London in 1970

Jerry Goodman (born March 16, 1949) is an American violinist known for playing electric violin with The Flock and the jazz fusion ensemble Mahavishnu Orchestra.


Jerry Goodman was born on March 16, 1949, in Chicago, Illinois. His parents were both members of the string section of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and his uncle was the noted composer and jazz pianist Marty Rubenstein. Jerry was trained in a conservatory before he began his musical career as The Flock's roadie and subsequently as a violinist.

After his 1971 appearance on John McLaughlin's album My Goal's Beyond, he became a member of McLaughlin's original Mahavishnu Orchestra lineup until the band broke up in 1973, and was viewed as a soloist of equal virtuosity to McLaughlin, keyboardist Jan Hammer and drummer Billy Cobham.

In 1974, after Mahavishnu, Goodman released the album Like Children with Mahavishnu keyboard alumnus Jan Hammer. Starting in 1985 he recorded three solo albums for Private Music -- On the Future of Aviation, Ariel, and the live album It's Alive with collaborators including Fred Simon and Jim Hines—and went on tour with his own band, as well as with Shadowfax and The Dixie Dregs. He scored Lily Tomlin's The Search for Signs of Intelligent Life in the Universe and is the featured violinist on numerous film soundtracks, including Billy Crystal's Mr. Saturday Night and Steve Martin's Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. His violin can be heard on more than fifty albums from artists ranging from Toots Thielemans to Hall & Oates to Styx to Jordan Rudess to Choking Ghost to Derek Sherinian. Goodman has appeared on four of Sherinian's solo records - Inertia (2001), Black Utopia (2003), Mythology (2004), and Blood of the Snake (2006)

In 1993, Goodman joined the American instrumental band, The Dixie Dregs, fronted by guitarist Steve Morse. Goodman appeared on one studio recording Full Circle (1994), and the live album "California Screamin'" (2000). In 1996 Session violist and producer Ray Tischer featured Goodman on the award-winning CD Canciones del Sol/Britt Bossa Orchestra (band)[1] on Tischer's original instrumental Toca del Angel.

After an absence from the public eye in live concert, he toured in 2004 and 2005 with Gary Husband in his group Gary Husband’s Force Majeure, and appeared on the DVD Gary Husband's Force Majeure - Live at the Queen Elizabeth Hall. Even more recently, he played with the San Diego-based fusion group Hectic Watermelon and with Dream Theater in their album Black Clouds & Silver Linings. Goodman has also been a part of Billy Cobham's Spectrum 40 tour.


As leader

With The Flock

With Mahavishnu Orchestra 1971–1974: First incarnation: Jerry Goodman, John McLaughlin, Jan Hammer, Rick Laird, Billy Cobham

With Jan Hammer

With John McLaughlin

With Dixie Dregs

With Howard Levy, Oteil Burbridge, and Steve Smith

As a guest artist


Sources & external Links[edit]


  1. ^ Ray Tischer violist/producer