Jimmy Dawkins

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Jimmy Dawkins
Dawkins in March 1981
Dawkins in March 1981
Background information
Birth nameJames Henry Dawkins
Born(1936-10-24)October 24, 1936
Tchula, Mississippi, United States
DiedApril 10, 2013(2013-04-10) (aged 76)
Chicago, Illinois, United States
Instrument(s)Guitar, vocals
Years activeLate 1960s–2013
LabelsDelmark, Storyville, Earwig Music

James Henry “Jimmy” Dawkins (October 24, 1936 – April 10, 2013) was an American Chicago blues and electric blues guitarist and singer.[1] He is generally considered to have been a practitioner of the "West Side sound" of Chicago blues.[2]


Dawkins was born in Tchula, Mississippi.[3] He moved to Chicago in 1955,[4] where he worked in a box factory, started to play in local blues clubs, and gained a reputation as a session musician.

In 1969, thanks to the efforts of his friend Magic Sam, his first album, Fast Fingers, was released by Delmark Records. It won the Grand Prix du Disque from the Hot Club de France.[4][5] In 1971, Delmark released his second album, All for Business, with the singer Andrew Odom and the guitarist Otis Rush.[1]

Dawkins toured in the late 1970s, backed up by James Solberg (of Luther Allison and the Nighthawks) on guitar and Jon Preizler (the Lamont Cranston Band, Luther Allison, and Albert King), a Seattle-based Hammond B-3 organ player known for his soulful jazz-influenced style. Other musicians that toured with Dawkins in the late 1970s were Jimi Schutte (drums), Sylvester Boines (bass), Rich Kirch and Billy Flynn (guitars). Dawkins toured in Europe with this group of musicians. He also toured in Japan and recorded more albums in the United States and Europe.[4] He contributed a column to the blues magazine Living Blues.

In the 1980s he released few recordings but started his own record label, Leric Records, and was more interested in promoting other artists,[4] including Tail Dragger Jones, Queen Sylvia Embry, Little Johnny Christian,[6] and Nora Jean Bruso (née Wallace).

Dawkins died of undisclosed causes on April 10, 2013, aged 76.[7]



  • Fast Fingers (1969), Delmark Records
  • All for Business (1971), Delmark Records
  • Jimmy Dawkins (1971)
  • Tribute to Orange (1971)
  • Transatlantic 770 (1972)
  • Blisterstring (1976), Delmark Records
  • Come Back Baby (1976), Storyville Records
  • Hot Wire '81 (1981), with Rich Kirch, Sylvester Boines, and Jimi Schutte, recorded in Paris
  • Jimmy and Hip: Live! (1982)
  • Feel the Blues (1985)
  • All Blues (1986)
  • Chicago on My Mind: Living the Blues (1991), recording in 1971, Vogue Records
  • Kant Sheck Dees Bluze (1992), Earwig Music Company
  • Blues and Pain (1994)[8]
  • B Phur Real (1995)
  • Me, My Guitar & the Blues (1997)
  • Vol. 2: I Want to Know (1999), recorded in 1975, Storyville Records
  • Born in Poverty (1999), recorded in 1972 & 1974, Black & Blue Records
  • American Roots: Blues (2002), compilation 1994–1997
  • West Side Guitar Hero (2002)
  • Tell Me Baby (2004)

With other artists[edit]

  • Blues Queen Sylvia & Jimmy Dawkins: Midnight Baby (1983)
  • Jimmy Dawkins / Chicago Beau / Blue Ice Bragason: Blues from Iceland (1991)
  • Sunnyland Slim & Big Voice Odom: Chicago Blues Festival 1974 with Jimmy Dawkins (2005)

As sideman[edit]

With Luther Allison

With Carey Bell


  1. ^ a b Bill Dahl. "Jimmy Dawkins | Biography". AllMusic. Retrieved 2015-03-11.
  2. ^ "New York Magazine". 1994-10-10. Retrieved 2015-03-11.
  3. ^ Gérard Herzhaft. Encyclopedia of the Blues. Internet Archive. p. 52. Retrieved 2015-03-11. jimmy dawkins guitarist.
  4. ^ a b c d Russell, Tony (1997). The Blues: From Robert Johnson to Robert Cray. Dubai: Carlton Books. p. 106. ISBN 1-85868-255-X.
  5. ^ Ted Gioia. Delta Blues: The Life and Times of the Mississippi Masters Who Revolutionized American Music. Internet Archive. p. 316. Retrieved 2015-03-11. jimmy dawkins magic.
  6. ^ Colin Larkin, ed. (1995). The Guinness Who's Who of Blues (Second ed.). Guinness Publishing. p. 106. ISBN 0-85112-673-1.
  7. ^ Ben Connor. "Jimmy 'Fast Fingers' Dawkins Dead: Blues Guitarist Dies at 76". Spinner.ca. Archived from the original on 2013-04-16. Retrieved 2013-04-13.
  8. ^ "JazzTimes". December 1994. Retrieved 2015-03-11.


  • Sharp, Steven, March/April 1993, 'Jimmy Dawkins: Deep Into The Feelings', Living Blues, Vol. 108

External links[edit]