Hammond clone war is over – Numa Organ won the battle

Well As I have been involved in the battle for many years now I wanted to share that knowledge, because it IS a knowledge based on proper experienve.

I have been the lucky owner of all the software emulations of the Hammond sound, including the fabulous VB3, I have played all the clones on the market (except the Hammichord and Nord).  I have personnaly owned Korg CX3 V2, Voce microB2+, Hammond XK1 and Hammond XK3C, Hammond C3, and now I own a Hammond B3 the real beast with a Leslie 145.
I can tell you one thing, if you are on the quest for the definitive emulation, just choose the Numa Organ (with the keyb emulation, so that must be true for all keyb products),. It is the best clone on the market I have experienced.

And what is fabulous is that it is right out of the box. It’s clear you can tune the XK1, XK3C to sound like a B3, but when you open the box, well the feeling of the instrument, the sound, the percussions, evrything seems fabricated and just-missed. Even if the wood-box itself is closer to the vintage Hammond style, well the sound is not as is the case with the Numa Organ.

My first reaction when I bought the B3 was to sell my XK3c as the difference was flagrant. Now I have the Numa I know the quest is over, this is the definitive replacement for the real beast.
Ans you know what I think they not only killed the contest for supremacy among clones, unfortunately I think they have killed the B3 itself. Of course I aknowledge that the B3 is better, but it is also so much more expensive to maintain.  I think it’s something like when Brutus killed Caesar, The Hammond sound made that clone market flourish and the best clone may kill the father of all clones, the B3 itself.

Every time I lit my B3 I am afraid that it will stop functionning, and from time to time I can hear him grunt in Jimmy Smith’s way, like he was going to die. And I’m afraid, because all of you know how much it costs to repare a Hammond if you don’t have the knowledge, anbd the spare parts, and the instruments … well it costs you the price of a Numa. And it’s more than 200 Kilos while the Numa organ is 10 ! 10 Kilos and you can connect it to a real Leslie too ! Wouaouw.

I have prepared a clone comparison matrix but I have to update it. If you are interested in the sound the playability, the Numa organ is the ultimate winner.

And I can tell you all my friends, I’m not Italian ;-> If you don’t believe me chck it by yourself, You can go here to see/hear the comparison and believe me it’is true.

Comparison 1

Comparison 2

Okay the player is italian but your ears are not, well aside if you happen to be italian, but in that case you already know so you won’t be loosing time reading me no ?

So if you plan to buy a Hammond clone I advise you to buy this one as it has everything you need, in particular if you are interested in the classic hammonds styles of Jimmy Smith and followers (that’s my religion).

And the Leslie, oh my good, that’s incredible. I adore playing without Leslie, just with a C3 chorus and then you fire the Leslie-Slow and then the Leslie-Fast and … I can’t believe it, you are in a Hammond Nirvana, floating in the air and you can feel Jimmy Smith’s presence, and your fingers, oh my god … they are mooving, they have their own life, they play without you thinking, just you hearing engaging in a sensual relation with the deepness of that fabulous original Hammond sound. You are teared apart in a Maelstrom of emotions and you are part of that Jazz-Funk elite because you own in that little piece of time THE sound you adore, more than your life ! Don’t stop the Leslie, thank you Laurens, thank you Don, thank you Jimmy.

Also you have an audio input so you can play along with your favorites (check out with I got a woman) get mad ! get crazy you have the power at your fingertips, you are a kind of darvador with 10 sabres your fingers, and the power to move it in all directions and swirl by the grace of the Leslie. It’s a sensual healing my friends.

Must have been that prompted Suzuki to dig out the SK1/SK2 and the fact that the Nord guys have put drawbars on their latest models ? But as I have read so much compliments on the Suzuki-Hammond and as I was deceived I want to spare you deceipt my fellow hammond players.
Thank you Numa, Thank you fatar, thank you Sconomaglio, Thank you Italy, thank you Jeané-Marie for selling me that beast for only 850 Euros.

Posted in For the love of music | 1 Comment

Bad father

I come back home every night and ignore my kids. All they have from me is: “Come down, time to eat, stop playing, stop bulshitting your little brother. Go to bed. Stop watching tv”.

When I come home at night I just have one occupation: myself. Want to play organ … for hours. Want to watch tv, do the things I like, to relax …

I don’t spend time playing with them anymore, talking to them.

I am their father. They need me. They don’t need youtube to be their teacher or some wii wwe games to learn the skills of life.

Yesterday my little one, my beloved little one boy, sat by my side, acted as an adult, talked to me, made me company, then he asked me if he could cook with me, and he did, he really enjoyed it. He looked so happy, and he learned something, and he managed to get some time with his father.

His older brother, quite didn’t see him, he was doing his stuff with that wrestling game on the nintendo-  He spent hours with that, happy as one who has found a new family. Maybe I should think about it why he likes this family so much. It’s a family where everybody meets all the time (well for fighting), where things happen, where they fight but quite never get hurt, where extraordinary things happen, where they move all the time, they are strong, trained… lots of people watching and liking them, WAOUW !

And then he sees his father: never goes out, comes home, sits his big ass and doesn’t move, takes his ipad ans surfs for ours, yells at him from time to time…

What a shame I am for my kids, and those little ones, still love me. The one who loves nintendo wrestling games, after his games, his youtube , well he came to me, sat by my side, and spent some time watching the olympics at my side, while I was surfing the internet watching for some results, not paying attention at him.

Well those olympics on TV, what’s the goal I mean ? We are so intoyxicated. You spend your time sitting, and watching, while your heart, or someone else’s is bleeding.

Some days you are so engaged in that slipping slope you don’t even have the will to try, to stand up, to rise, to raise to your responsabilities.

I hope I can change, I must change !

The kids you can think all the things you want and have brilliant ideas on how to grow them up, buit one is the law: You are their raw model !

They see you as you act not as you think you are, your actions define you more than (empty) words you say, they are the model for them.

So you have to think:  what type of mould do you want to be for your own ? Would you like your kids one day to be like yourself ? Will you be proud of what you’ve done for them ?

So I ask you, please, Mr Myself: “Move your ass ! NOW” and bring those kids OUT, practice some sports with them, take them in your arms,  play nintendo wwe games with them, don’t leave them grow alone.

Becaiuse if you do that, You’ll miss that later, you’ll miss them, and regret  all of those lost days, lost in yourself, in your unisgnifiance.

Because if you do that you stupid, You’ll never regret a single second you spend with them playing, laughing, being with them and they will reward you with love, eternal love !

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Internets influence on natural selection

The other day by brother in law and I were involved in a birthday. I was fascinated to see that no brainer be the center of attraction of everyone just because he had an Ipad. I laughed a littlée bit at hium as at some points he could’nt retrieve the correct informaiton about the names of bottles of wines of 2, 3, 5, 10 liters etc … and there was someone in the crowd who knew, but not anyone else. So he appeared as he was an expert, buit as you know brothers in law are no experts. I told him that but he told me, well you know we have this new tool, why not use it ? That tool gives me the opportunity to appear as a rocket scientist, why hould I renounce to that glory ? At first I laughed, in second I thought maybe he was right and some days after I relazed there was a flaw in that way of thinking, in that way of acting as I looked to my own experience, I understood that we were, that the entire Huimanity was caught in a fudamental flaw that could endanger our whole specie and our survival in the darwinian sense. Let me argue …


Well as we know since Darwin, humans as we are. are the result of natural selection as the result of the 2 processus:

1) random evolutions

2) survival of the fittest

Since the introduction of the internet and the emergence of the global mind (see Howard Bloom’s books) there is an impact I think is underestimated. The internet is mostly seen as a complementary to the human brain as it is a recipient of the global brain. What I am experiencing is that by an adaptative process, i tend more and more to forget things: mostly names, dates, … and how did that happen. Welll I’m encouraged by the facility with wich I’m able to acceed the information on the internet, so it seems as my brain is being polished from the unnecessary information. It is just as if my brain is optimizing the quantity of data it is storing as another storing place is available.

That process is hyperactivated via the emergence of the mobile internet and since I have my ipad with 24/24 connexion I happen more and more to be searching on the web.

That is a back-clash for me as it is not in the interest of the human mind. For sure it is in the interest of the global brain that the information is not copied but litteraly transfered to the global brain. This gives more potential power to theat global brain or to the ones controling it in various ways:

They could change the data without me knowing or beiung aware of

I have less proper knowledge

In the long term the human brain will be quite empty with just some knowledge ot the aquisition processes to activate the search and some minimal data (insufficient by themselves). In that sense the human mind is shared and we could say in some kind of form his body is too.

In fact the Humans can be vioewed as aquisition interfaces for that global brain: as soon as I have an information as I know that my storage capacity, memorizing capacity is weakening, I am going to store it on internet, reinforcing the global brain and weakening the human brain.

In the long term we can be seen as slaves working on data aquisition like aunts for that global brain or global mind company ?

In the medium term the humans with no brain storage capacity will have the same survival chances as other humans, in fact probably they will have better chances as by evolution they would have been selected with better capacities to retrieve and store the information ion internet, and in the long term they will prevail.

So the humanity will be made in the long term of:

1) A Global brain, with all the knowledge but without the faculty to use it (will auto-develop in the next phases by technological evolution => robots or cyber-humans)

2) Managers of the global brain with all the power, perceiving royalties for the use of global brain

3) Providers with a litlle basic brain, feeding the global brain with knowledge and information, aquired by their experience

4) Retrievers with no brain at all

Well that seems not so interesting for us humans ? What future do we want, are we aware of the challenges on our evolution that are a consequence of the evolution of the internet ?

To be continues …

Posted in I could write a book, Ideas to change the world, My weird science, Phylosophical reflections | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How to safely upgrade your Korg CX3 V2 to last firmware version V2.01

I have met a lot of people discouraging the firmware update of your Korg CX3 V2,

That’s a great pitty as that upgrade enhances the usage of the keyboard as a hammond replacement very much. As I didn’t find a comprehensive step by step guide anywhere I decided to provide this one by myself aggregatin various resources I found on the internet and my own personnel experience.

WARNING: This procedure is for KORG CX3 V2, with the drawbars over the keyboard not on the side !!!

1.  Prepare the CX3 V2 for the upgrade

Power on the Korg CX3
Select Global for global parameters menu
Set global midi channel to 1
Set sysexec parameters to enable
Save your changes:
press Write – press Global – press Write
Power off the Korg CX3

2. Install physical midi connexion between your computer and the CX3 V2

Buy a professional “midi to usb device” with at least 1 midi IN and 1 midi OUT connector
Install drivers for your “midi to usb device”
Plug in your “mido to usb device” into your computer (usb)
Connect your “midi to usb device” midi IN connector to your CX3 midi OUT connector
Connect your “midi to usb device” midi OUT connector to your CX3 midi IN connector
If it is an option available, set your “midi to usb device” default midi channel to 1 (that may not be necessary as generally all channels will be available)

3, Check version of your korg CX3 V2

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A copyrighted idea for Yahoo/Google ? Search profile … • Posted by dejan on January 19, 2009

Discussing with my colleague and friend Jose-Luis Ron we pointed out the following proposition:

What if Google search engine integrated a KIND OF CUSTOM SEARCH PROFILE oriented kind of way of finding the information.

We thought that a 10 year kid interested in astronomy would view the web in a different way than a university professor interested in chromatic desintegration in the upper atmosphere of Jupiter.

So why not provide the anonymous surfer with the possibility to endorse a predefined search profile. We even thought about the possibility of linking that to the work done around the STRONG test, maybe for identifying the basic default profile of a given user.

That profile could be predetermined or constructed by responding to some basic questionsy or cliking on different possibilities (tree-like something like an AI type decision tree). That default profile could be stored in the browser (firefox) or better in the google profile of the user.

In the long run the more hits would help auto reconfigure the profiles and they would become more a more accurate at each individual search.

Posted in Business plans, Ideas to change the world, Software Ideas | Leave a comment

Jazz musician magic ultimate quick reference

Here is a complete quick reference for jazz musicians

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Why do we train our kids to spoil their lives ?

Be a good boy, work hard at school, tiden your room, listen to your teacher, listen to your mum, dad, grandpa, uncle, be a doctor-engineer ot architect not a cook, houseperson, simple employee.  All those phrases you’ve heard a thousand times are they ment to make you a successfull person ? Yes for sure, they are meant for that ! Is it shure that someone who works hard at school, tidens his room and listen to mommydad wil become a successful doctor in engine architecture ! But now Imagine, (as silly that it may appear) you were not to follow those rules.  Will that for sure spoil your life ?

Of course not. Those just sound like empty mantras, repeated over from generation to (unsuccessfull) generation, what scientists call “memes”, but those memes were fabricated in the same mould as religions by those who once had the power and wanted to sew the seeds of obedience and resilience to the mass of population. Do the persons who tell you that achieve success ? No, no way 99 % didn’t, so why do they perpetuate the same dumb words that their parents told them ? Why ? Because they have been brainwashed and now programmed as they are to brainwash you … It’s your turn they say, but they are not aware of that. They truly think they will achieve something. Even though it is obvious they won’t achieve anything (good). They will achieve something remarkable that is to depress you, to convince you that you are a failure and make you believe that you have nothing to bring up to this world to this only life of yours you have on earth. People think you should fit in a mould, the glorious mould of success and the shape of which is utterly limited.  If you can’t fit into that mould ? you certainly are a failure ?

But from life I have learnt that success is everywhere around and that happyness too. It is not limited to doctors, engineers, lawyers or architects, in fact I have seen a lot of unhappy doctors around me. Nor is it measured by the quantity of money you have on your bank account.

So what should be the real message ?

This most important one:

1. discover yourself !

We have all a unique flavour, masqued by the environment. Discover things you like doing with flow (read the book emotional intelligence about the flow and guts feeling) you like doing the most, you could repeat on doing for hours and do them, do things you are motivated for. Stop loosing your time doing things you “must” do.

The parents should say: as a parent I will help you progress in the path you chose, in the path you discover is yours. Listen your inner self of what you could work on or spent times for hours, or discover beyond that passion of yours, what motivates you, what makes you want to do things.

In the Native americans the name of the warrior given at birth is just a provisional name, the real name is only given later when the little pappoo has become a warrior, that is when he has defined his path in life, and that for sure is not at his birth, and that is not decided by hius father but by his tribu. I have read books stating (Freakonomics) that your chances of success in life are determined by the name they five you. It is as if your name was a CV of yours. Of course that sounds silly but you are not born with a CV already written, You have to write your own.

And thenthere is this one:

2. Perseverance

pursue, try, try very hard. It won’t work first time, nor second, … it will work one day and if even it never works you’ll have spend your life doing things you like and that in the end is the bigeest success of yours.

That is the most important message. The second one should be:

3. Let them and encourage them toMake friends

A lot of friends, as many friends as possible, all around this world. Your parents should give you the opportunity to meet as many people as possible. Good Bad, Uggly, Bold, rich poor, beautifull and to make as many friends as possible. Because you know later you never know which one can help you on your path to personal glory (achieving your personal legend: read Paulo Coelho) and success.

The best way of achieving that is to enrole them in social activities of any kind. In fact that is the best way to achieve various goals: Listen to their inner self – facilitate them finding who they are.

4. Stay in contact

Be interested in what they are doing, be interested in the revelation of who they are. Because you may have intuitions but you don’t know who they are and what they are going to be and what they are made to achieve on this planet

5. Don’t overprotect them PLEASE, don’t do them wrong with the best intentions.

Strive to your duty and you will know what you are made of. Let them discover themselves. If you do everything for them they will never learn anything

6. We live in a world of plentyness not of rareness

There’s enough of glory for anyone as long as anyone doesn’t become a doctor. Imagione a society wioth only doctors, engineers, lawyers, and rock stars ?

In every profession there is the “Top of the rock” and the “Bottom of the ocean”. Of course he wants to be a photograph and nowadays everyone wants to be a photograph because it’s so easy to be a photograph, but in reality because of that: WOUW, what a challenge ! Being e photograph, a good one, imagine the level you must achieve ! That’s a challenge, don’t disconsider your child, and don’t forget, that is a poarcel of his path, maybe he will dioscover his path on the way to photography and that would be cinema, animation studio or maybe designer or else … anything if he didn’t try photography he would never have discovered his path … all paths lead to your Rome: discovering your unique path.

Concentrate on your sphere of influence not only on your sphere of interest:

Once you have your goals set. Also this one from Covey: Teach them to spend (most of) their times on things they can act on, things they can influence. There are those spheres described by Covey, the sphere of interest and the sphere of action, If you spend your time only on the sphere of interest your sphere of action gets smaller and smaller as your real skills lesten. But if you concentrate on the sphere of action, well litlle by little your sphere of action inflates and soon it will recover your sphere of main interest. That is paradoxal because yes sometimes you should work on things you like less buit because that will help you achieve your main goals which you should have in mind. For instance if my passion is organ and I want to play like Jimmy Smith and don’t have his talent, but that is the thing I like the most, well I have to learn the basics of jazz, be able to play in all chords, learn jazz theory and learn various songs, learn to play left hand bass. Maybe some of the things I don’t llike so much but as I have that final goal in mind I do it with pleasure and I can measure that the path to my goal diminishes, that I am progressing on the path of achieving my personal legend.

Suggested Readings:

Daniel Goleman: Emotional Intelligence
Steven R. Covey 7 Habits of successfull peoplee
Paolo Coelho Various books: manual of the warrior of light
Livre sur les principes du monde par un scénariste de Hollywood

Here is a diagram resuming it all:

Here is a spreadshits that analyzes actions in regards of principles

Coach your children


To be continued …

Posted in Ideas to change the world, Phylosophical reflections, Uncategorized | Leave a comment

End the dumb computer please ! After the Mac Apple we nead a sexy thEPeach.

I’m tired of those dumb computers. Always have the same impression when I have to do something on it: it’s like interacting with a completely dumb person. We need a new revolution, we need the peach after the apple, more juicy !

My user experience is terrible. Are you like me ?Do you have the impression of loosing hours on your computer telling him step by step what he has to do in order for you to have the expected results.

Do you have the impression that you always have to tell him the computer all you want step by step, and most of all: you have to do the job because he neither knows you, even if it’s been years that you have the same computer. He’s unable to understand that you are engaged in a sequence. You have to do the sequence step by step. Imagine the time you could win if it recognized you, the sequence you are engaged in and if it anticipated the next steps, and even was able to propose you complimentary steps based on user experience worldwide.

Especially when you deal with audio/video/images problems everyone is telling the same, we dont have enough time to arrange the photos, convert videos, publish them … why ? because you have to do everything step by step.

When you put some vacation photos on your HDD, should’nt he suppose you want the in the right orientation, maybe that you would like to select the ones to publish on facebook, the ones to delete, the ones to show to your close family, the ones to show to your friends, ethe ones to archive ?

Then by recording how you do that process, maybe he can identify the way you do it and your personality. If you always put on facebook the photos where you have at least 2-3 family members, mybe he could automatically identify those photos and propose them for facebook publishing ? Imagine the gain in time. Thats possible but it also need your computer to interact with facebook data (for instance the face recognition feature). So there must be a communication protocol between your computers OS and the different sites hosting your datas (including your computer). You could visualize your computer as a personal site only not anymore a machine, just a site with specific hosted data and a personality profile, yourselfs.

What do we need for that in hardware world ? Well HDD space, Broadband, Calculus power, etc … fortunately we now have all of that, so what are we waiting for ?

We are in the internet world, everyone is exchanging good practives via google, except the computers, they stay dumb, they are the wires through wich the knowledge passes, they have no knowledge.

Remember the golden era of artificial intelligence, expert systems, why have OS abandonned that potential ?

I want the computer to know me, to know what I like and what I do most of the times, and when I do something out of my usual steps that he recognizes the new pattern and makes a link with other users patterns, because I’m sure that I’m not the only one in the world doing that.

For instance when I have various music playing programs installed, That I have 32Gb of Hammond Music, that I have various music performing programs installed that play Hammond sound, well the OS should Know that I’m a hammond fan. So when I go to the internet he should know what most of hammond fans like to do: Surf for Hammond videos, Look for used hammond computers, nbe in contact with other hammond players around the world, find Hammond music (new and old). When I watch a video, 3-4 times onb youtube, maybe he could propose me to download it, and as he knows that I regularly convert videos to Iphone/Ipad format maybe he could propose me to convert it directly. Even propose me to download other videos downloaded by other hammond fans. He should know my material and maybe propose me to connect the appropriate ones and make the synchro for me ? Imagine how that would be ? GREAT !

Such a computer would be connected to the internet, to a database of user profiles and it should be able to determine sets of actions similar user profiles are performing. That is: from a set of actions and the context (data, sites, images tags, etc …), determine a user profile, the search in that profile the corresponding matching set of actions you would naturally follow from the actions you initiated. Of course Each step you make facilitates the identification.

I Don’t want to be anonymous to my computer anymore !

Of course such a technology can only be developped by someone like Google because of the mastery of the web data, also probably it would need a partnership with a user oriented company llike Apple or maybe Samsung, Also the implication of massive collaborative sites like Youtune & Facebook, such a partnership could lead to the creation of a new brand thEPeach and of course the emergence of a new Steve Jobs: myself 😉

We have to bring in those companies to collaborate NOW, can’t wait anymore.

Remains one question: why should we do that ? Well because we are mortals and have so many things to do that are important what we have to find ways to spend less times on things that are less important. So we can concentrate on the essence of living: Learning, loving and sharing. To accomplish that I need an intelligent computer who knows me as I’m unique but also as I’m a human with similar needs as other humans.

Of course all of this brilliant ideas are copyrighted !

Posted in Business plans, Ideas to change the world, My weird science, Software Ideas | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Interview with Jimmy Smith from all about jazz http://www.allaboutjazz.com/journalists/milkowski4.htm

You recently opened for Horace Silver at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Later Horace was overheard saying, “I’m not gonna let anybody ever book me to follow that crazy Jimmy Smith. He didn’t even leave a piece of stage for me to play on. He burned the place down!”

I didn’t even know what I was doing. I was under a spell…my mojo spell. You know anything about voodoo? I spread it all around the bandstand before I go on. Then I spread just a teeny bit around my organ and I let my tenor player step on just a little bit of powder. That’s to keep his ass hot. And that’s how come he burns so much. When he plays, he plays! The rest of the stuff, the aroma just goes all over the bandstand.

So you got your mojo woikin’.

I gotta keep it woikin’.

Did you do the same thing down in Osaka when you made that live record last year with Kenny Burrell?

Hey man, we had it working there too. And the drummer Jimmie Smith…I had to spread a little bit around the drums ’cause he sound scared of me. He never played with me in his life. He played with Jimmy McGriff but he never played with me. And he told me, “It’s altogether different when you’re playing with Jimmy Smith. Everything…all my life has changed.” He said, “Jimmy Smith will rejuvenate you, change your stuff around.’ ‘Cause I had to teach him how to play with me. A drummer can’t just jump up and play with me, not just any drummer. ‘Cause I’ll lose him. Oh man, he’ll get lost in the shuffle…dropping sticks and everything.

And that mojo dust works.

Hey, motherfucker, if I come down there to New Orleans again to play, I’ll put a spell on you. You won’t know your way home. You be driving on the wrong street somewhere…”Damn, I thought this was Rampart.”

That live album is great. Sounds like you were all in a good mood that night, playing some blues in Japan on the night before Christmas.

Oh man, we had champagne and Kentucky Colonel chicken. Yeah, we had the Colonel in Osaka, man! That’s the day we went on top of the Hilton, the penthouse…man, they had a nice buffet up there. Kenny took his bear with him and I had my wolf with me…uh, well, Lola’s a lion.

Your wife Lola says all you wanna do is eat and look at the cowboy movies.

That’s right.

And never gain a pound.

You got that right. And I’m almost 66 years old, you know.

It’s great to hear you still playing with Kenny Burrell after all these years.

And he don’t look too old either. He’s getting grey but the face is still young.

Elvin Jones is another guy who looks eternally youthful.

No, well, Elvin’s too ugly to look old. That’s an ugly man. You know what happened, when we first met it was Haight-Ashbury in Frisco, and man…I was off on Monday…I was playing at the Jazz Workshop and he was playing at the Blackhawk. So anyway, I wasn’t working on this Monday and he was on. So I walk in the door to catch Elvin’s gig and the guy says, “Jimmy Smith, come on in! Elvin Jones is here, man. I hope you guys can hook up tonight, man.” And here comes Elvin, “Hey, man, we’re gonna get into something tonight, OK?” I said, “What? I ain’t never played witch you, man.” So he just grabbed me, and he’s strong anyway…I had to put all my little karate shit on his ass. I grabbed his dick. He say, “Turn my dick loose, motherfucker.” I say, “Man, don’t fool with me, boy.” Everybody say, “Jimmy Smith is crazy, don’t fool with him.” ‘Specially when I’m not playing…and I’m ‘off,’ I’m really off. It’s what the black people call you. It’s not o-f-f…it’s o-f…they say, “The nigger’s o-f.” That’s from the South. Say that. It sounds good. It’s got a ring to it. So anyway, we play. Elvin broke the sock cymbal right off, man. He done broke that sucker, ’cause he’s so strong, man. And when we got done, I was soaked, he was soaked, our socks were wet. I’m serious, Bill. Our socks were soaking wet. I messed that suit up…you know, all that salt you get from sweating. You ever see a musician with those white armpits? These motherfuckers with all that salt beadin’ their ass up?

Just like race horses?


I just got this Mosaic box in the mail…

The what?

Mosaic Records just put out that boxed set of your stuff from 1957.

I never heard of Mosaic Records.

All your Blue Note stuff from three days in a row in 1957…

Oh man, I don’t know about that. It’s probably sitting back there unopened with a bunch of other records I ain’t never had time to get to.

You don’t listen much to music at home?

Nope. But do you know I’m doing a rap thing with the Plus Three.

Plus Three?

We Three?

You mean Us3?

Well, somebody’s damn three.

Yeah, it’s Us3. Or as they say down here, Y’all Three.

{Laughter] Yeah, goddamn! You got that sucker on the head, boy. Y’all Three. Whatever the fuck they are. Well, you heard about the three little monkeys, right? Hear nothin’, see nothin’, fuck nothin’…that’s them. But we played together over in London. Man, them kids was going crazy! I mean, I never heard young people holler so loud. It’s not like when the girls used to holler for Frank Sinatra, right? It’s not that kind of holler. This is like a violent, exciting, stomping their feet kind of holler. We did four nights, had 600 people every night in this small club. They just jammed ’em in. And the only thing about it, buddy…my wife got a contact high. They had some reefer, some hash…I mean, smokin’ in the club! My wife came past them going up to the soundboard so she could hear what it sound like, you know. And by the time she got to the dressing room she be sayin’…”Whoooo! Jimmy-Jimmy-Jimmy-Jimmy! What are they smokin’ out there?”And I say, “Oh shit,” and I stepped out the dressing room door and the shit hits you right there. And she came all the way through that whole crowd that was smoking. Man, she stayed in that dressing room the rest of the four nights. She didn’t move nowhere. She was really high. And her eyes was all funny looking and shit. Man, that was a wild gig. Of course, I also played Carnegie Hall twice this year. Did you see me on there, Bill?

I was there [Verve Records’ 40th anniversary celebration]. Yeah, that was a good show.

Why didn’t you come back and say something?

They had such a tight security thing happening it was hard to get backstage.

It was, it was terrible. They were putting all the managers out. They actually were gonna put Lola out until one of the fellas said, “You gonna put Lola out? Then Jimmy’s not gonna play.” And the other fella said to Lola, “No, no, no, I better let you inside because I understand Jimmy has a temper.”

So tell me about Babs Gonzalez?

That nut! That damn nut! Oh, Bill, man…did you know him?

No, but I loved his records.

Yeah, but damn, man, he was a nut. I met him in 1957. We were in the studio at 70 Broadway with [Blue Note founders] Alfred Lion and Francis Wolff. I had Eddie McFadden on guitar and Donald Bailey on drums. And, you know Babs, he lets everybody know when he’s making his grand entrance. He used to wear a cape. He was like Batman and shit. Ask anybody about Babs Gonzalez. He wore a cape and all that kind of shit. And he thought he was gonna be my manager. He was telling people he had discovered me but I was discovered already. Blue Note had came down to Philadelphia and they heard me play there. Babs said he brought them down, you know, like he’s my manager. So I had to deck this motherfucker, man. Did you know about his red pepper he’d throw in your eyes? Oh shit, he’d keep that in his lapel pocket. He wouldn’t fight. He couldn’t fight. He’d just throw pepper in your eyes, then he’d whup yo’ ass. So this man…he say, “I’m your manager, motherfucker…” and he put that forceful voice shit on. And I say, “Oh, no you not.’ And you know, I been in the Golden Gloves since I been seven years old. In Philadelphia you got to be able to pug. You don’t pug, you get your ass kicked too much. So I pugged my ass over. I was knockin’ suckers out that were damn near 195 pounds, when I was in the Golden Gloves, you know what I mean? I decked them suckers, man. And when I hit Babs, he laid out so pretty like he was going to a funeral or something. I hit that motherfucker so hard. See, I forgot ’cause I lost my temper. He went out so nice, laid on the floor and Alfred Lion is running around screaming, “Oh my god, Jimmy’s killed the man!” And all this shit. Frank Wolff be coming around with his camera and everything. It was chaos in that fucking studio.

I know you got into some kind of karate.

Yeah, for 25 years now.

I’ve seen your album Respect , where you got your kung fu robe on the cover.

Not kung fu, motherfucker. That’s shotokan. And that means sho-kill-yo’-ass. I studied that particular method. Shotokan is when you go to the diaphragm and pull out the fucking food, show him what he ate for dinner, you understand? And I mean that shit. Go in there, pull them fuckin’ greens out, put ’em right in his face and watch him faint. You know what I mean?

Yeah, that would come in handy on the subway.

Hey man, shit, you don’t need no damn gun. Pull them fucking intestines out…and they be movin’, you know, like worms. That shit be running all over my damn hand.

OK…switching topics here, how about telling us something about your early development on the organ.

Well, I wanted to learn fast, you see. I’m self-taught, you know. I left my organ in the warehouse where I supposed to pick it up and take it home. But I didn’t want people to know I couldn’t play that sumbitch. ‘Cause I couldn’t play it at first. So I left it in the warehouse and then…incidentally, the warehouse that I left it in, my daddy had plastered this particular warehouse. I’m a plasterer by trade. My Dad taught us, me and my brother. So it was right on time. My Daddy was nicknamed Mr. Blue Jimmy. Anyway, I asked if I could store my organ in this little room and practice, and the warehouse guy said, “Do anything you want.” So I stayed in that warehouse a year. I’d take my lunch, I’d take three sandwiches. And what I did, I had a guy make me a chart on the wall of the pedals, so I would look at that chart instead of looking down at the pedals to see where you was putting your foot. You look at the chart…that’s how I taught myself from the chart so I wouldn’t have to look down. You can’t be looking down at the damn pedals on a gig; you wanna get the people’s attention. So I taught myself my damn steps and I had to find my own sound. I kept pulling out stops until I lucked up on these three damn flute things. Then I cut my tremelo off to give it a big sound, and that sounded good. And that’s where I got my sound. ‘Cause I can put my tremelo too fast or medium or whatever to get the sound you want, see? So when I came out that fuckin’ warehouse, man, I was ready for anybody.

So you still play the same type of instrument?

Yeah, same one, Hammond. 40 years and those motherfuckers never gave me one. They never gave me shit. I’m still mad at ’em. So anyway, I stayed in the warehouse for about a year…got a downpayment from a loan shark, Mr. Goldstein. And he told me, “Now Little Sonny, I’m gonna have a man collecting every Saturday night.” And man, this motherfucker Bob would come in to the club…he’d be half tanked anyway…and he always carried that damn piece with him because if you didn’t pay, he’d blow your ass away. So I made sure I had that motherfucker’s money, you know? Hey man, I paid for my organ. Anyway, I got to playing some blues one night and people be shouting…you know how black people holler, like they in church. Piercing sound…it hits you. Well, Bob was getting into it. He had been drinking and he got excited and puts up his hands in the air and yells out, “Yeah!” And his piece falls on the floor. Somebody shouts, “Man got a gun! Lord have mercy, man got a gun!” Cleared the fuckin’ bar. And you know how black people are…they can move, boy. Now there’s a spiral stairway in this club. Can you imagine a bunch of black folks trying to get up a spiral stairway…crawling all over each other, ladies got their dresses up, their bloomers showin’ and shit…and I’m lookin’. It’s hard to get passed somebody on a spiral stairway, but niggas can tiptoe past each other, man, doin’ ’bout a hundred mile an hour. Man with a gun…you kiddin’? They were flying up that damn staircase…like a black Batman or something. And the poor little Jewish clubowner comes out in the middle of all this…”Vat iz goink on? Ver de people go? Vat gun? Ver iz de gun? Who’s got de gun?”

Sounds like a scene from a movie.

Yeah, man. We had some fun back in the day. Still do.

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A proposition for Browser


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