Home Cooking: The Philadelphia Jazz Organ Tradition In Concert It was in Philly where Jimmy Smith first took a church instrument and made it swing. Years later, the city's jazz community gathers to salute its many soulful pioneers of the Hammond B-3 organ.

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Home Cooking: The Philadelphia Jazz Organ Tradition In ConcertWBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center

The Jazz Organ Tradition In Philadelphia

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The Hammond electronic organ was developed with churches in mind, as a lower-cost alternative to pipe organs. But in Philadelphia, a keyboard player named Jimmy Smith was inspired by early jazz experiments on the instrument, and found a devastating way to adapt the new bebop style to the Hammond B-3. It seeded a new tradition of organ players in Philadelphia — major figures like "Groove" Holmes, Jimmy McGriff, Papa John and Joey DeFrancesco, and Trudy Pitts — and kickstarted a new sound in jazz at large.

Jazz Night In America visits Philadelphia for a history lesson and dance party: a tribute to organ masters Smith, Shirley Scott and Charles Earland with six local organists, multiple bands and three guest vocalists. With WXPN, WRTI and the Philadelphia Jazz Project, Jazz Night visits World Cafe Live for a B-3 jam featuring many of the city's finest musicians.

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