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JIMMY BURNS

PHOTOS OF JIMMY BURNS BY KURT SWANSON
E-MAIL: kurtswanson@juno.com

The younger brother of bluesman Eddie Burns, singer/guitarist Jimmy Burns followed in the family tradition, becoming a staple of Chicago's West Side club circuit after a long absence from the spotlight. Born February 27, 1943 in Dublin, Mississippi, he cut a handful of singles early in his career, but upon marrying and starting a family, he largely applied the brakes to his musical aspirations to focus on domestic life. Burns performed only rarely in the decades to follow; however, with his children all grown in the early 1990s, he rekindled his career, following up a hard day of operating his barbecue stand by cutting loose with a set of soulful blues at the Smokedaddy, his regular venue. In 1996, at the age of 53, Burns finally issued his long-awaited full-length debut, Leaving Here Walking.

In the mid-fifties Jimmy Burns moved to Chicago. By 1959, he had earned a leading role in an established Chicago vocal group. Jimmy released four songs with The Medallionaires. The group also sand backup on another record, but by the early sixties Jimmy was ready to record on his own.

In 1964, the first single by Jimmy Burns as a solo artist was released. For the next decade, he released several records which are now highly sought after by soul collectors. Unfortunately, Jimmy wasn’t aware of his growing popularity. Additionally, he received no compensation for his work. Not until almost fifty years later when a DJ from England offered Jimmy $250 for one of his early singles.
At the beginning of the seventies, Jimmy put the music aside and worked to support his family. He still got out and sat in at the local clubs now and then, and during this time he worked on his guitar playing. Having been a singer for so long comes out in a vocal-inflected guitar style that he has been developing since the seventies.

“Although family obligations kept him from pursuing music on anything more than a part-time basis over the last couple of decades, he never stopped performing. In the mid 1980s he joined forces with guitarist Glen Davis and his band, and worked the north side blues club circuit for a time; this collaboration resulted in a self-produced albums worth of material in 1986

By 1995, Jimmy had hooked up with Rockin’ Johnny Burgin and began playing regularly at The SmokeDaddy, a north side bar serving blues and barbeque. After hearing one of these gigs, Bob Koester of Delmark Records, signed Jimmy to record his first full length cd.~ Scott Dirks
Jimmy Burns Harlem Avenue Lounge Berwyn,IL 11/11/06
Jimmy Burns Rosa's Lounge Chicago, IL 2004
WEBSITE: http://www.jimmyburnsband.com

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Eddie Shaw, Sam Lay, Jimmy Burns
Eddie Shaw, Sam Lay, Jimmy Burns
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DSC_0279.jpgL.jpg5C4 copy.jpg
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