Big Joe Turner, born Joseph Vernon Turner Jr. (Kansas City18 may 1911 - Inglewood24 november 1985) was an American bluessinger.


 [verbergen*1 Career


Although his greatest fame in the 1950s began its rock and rollhits, such as the song- Shake, Rattle and Roll, stretches his career from the 1920s to the 1980s.

Turner had several nicknames, including The Boss of the Blues and Big Joe Turner (due to its figure). He discovered his love for music by the involvement with theChurch. His father died in a train accident when Turner was four years old. He started singing on the streets for money and left school at the age of 14. He then went to work in clubs in Kansas City, first as a Cook, later as a waiter. After a time Turner was known as The Singing Bartender (the singing bartender). Turner went singing in clubs like The Kingfish Club and The Sunset. Turner and his piano-playing partner Pete Johnson were local renowned artists.

Turners partnership with Boogie-Woogie pianist Pete Johnson proved successful. Together they left in 1936 to New York City, where they gave a concert together withBenny Goodman , but as Turner said: After our show with Goodman, we were posted to different locations, but New York wasn't ready for us so we headed back to Kansas City. They were eventually discovered in 1938 by the talent scout John h. Hammond, he invited them back to New York to appear on one of his "From Spirituals to Swing" concerts at Carnegie Hall, which was instrumental in spreading of jazz and blues to a wider audience.

Turner and Johnson scored a major hit with the song Roll Em Pete. The song is one of the first examples of recording the BackBeat. Turner has recorded the song several times with different artists and with other combinations.

Started In 1939 Turner and Johnson along with boogie players Albert Ammons and Meade Lux Lewis a residency at Café Society, a club in New York City where they appeared with singer Billie Holiday and Frank Newton's band. In addition to Roll 'em Pete Turner's most famous recordings were around that time "Cherry Red", "I Want A Little Girl" and "Wee Baby Blues".

In 1941 , he headed to Los Angeleswhere he performed in Duke Ellington's revue Jump for Joy in Hollywood. He appeared as a singing policeman in a act, called he's on the Beat. Los Angeles became his home base for a time. In 1945 he opened his own café together with Pete, called The Blue Moon Club.

Turner made a lot of recordings, not only with Johnson but also with the pianists Art Tatumand Sammy Price , with several jazz ensembles. He recorded on severalrecord labels, particularly National Records, where he recorded with the Count Basie Orchestra. In Turner's career, he led the transition from big bands to jump blues toR & B and finally to rock and roll. Turner was skilled in the traditional bluesverses. During the legendary Kansas City- refereinen jam session he traded in for hours long instrumental solos.

When Turner performed in 1951 with the Count Basie Orchestra at the Apollo Theater in Harlem, as a replacement for Jimmy Rushing, he was spotted by Ahmet and Nesuhi Ertegün, which Turner showed signs for a new label: Atlantic Records. Turner made a few hits with the standard blues pattern. "Chains of Love" and "Sweet Sixteen" made him a teen favorite and improved his success even before the hit Shake, Rattle and Roll. He also helped with this transforming the popular music.

Although the cover of the song Shake, Rattle and Roll by Bill Haley & His Comets was a bigger hit than that of Turner, were looking for many listeners the version of Turner and were introduced in the world of R & B.Elvis Presley showed he didn't need such an introduction. His version of the song combined Turners texts with Haleys arrangement, but that was not a successful single.

After a number of hits left Turner the popular music and returned to his roots as a singer, supported by a jazz band. In 1966 helped Bill Haley Turner's career back to refresh his band by him The Comets for a series of recordings available. In 1977 he recorded a cover of Guitar Slim, "The Things That I Used to Do".

In the 1960s and 70 returned Turner back to jazz and blues. He appeared on several festivals. He took on under the label impresario Norman Granz Pablo. A time together with his friendly rival Jimmy Witherspoon.He also worked with the German Boogie-Woogie pianist Axel Zwingenberger.

In 1945 Turner won the Esquire magazine Award for male vocalist[1]. He also won the Melody Maker for best new singer in 1956[1]. In the Jazz Journal award he got up first and foremost as male vocalist in 1965[1.

In 1983, 2 years before he died, Turner was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame. [2]


Turner died In 1985 at the age of 74 of a heart attack, earlier, he had been suffering from arthritisarthritis and diabetes. Big Joe Turner was posthumously inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1987[3]


The music critic Robert Palmer of the New York Times said: ..his voice, pushing like a Count Basie solo, rich and grainy as a section of saxophones, which dominated the room with the sheer sumptuousness of its sound. [4]

Well-known quotation[Edit]Edit


Roll 'em boy, Gonna jump for joy, Yeah man, happy as a baby boy,

My baby just brought me a brand new toy choo-choo. — "Roll 'em, Pete"-written by Joe Turner and Pete Johnson.


More famous songs[Edit]Edit

  • Roll 'em Pete -1938
  • Chains of Love -1951
  • Honey Hush -1953
  • Shake, Rattle And Roll -1954
  • Flip Flop And Fly -1955
  • Cherry Red -1956
  • Corrina, Corrina -1956
  • Wee Baby Blues -1956
  • Love Rollercoaster -1956
  • Midnight Special -1957

Selective Discography[Edit]Edit

  • Roll 'em, Pete -"Joe Turner & Pete Johnson" (Vocalion, January 1939)
  • Cherry Red -"Pete Johnson & his Boogie Woogie Boys" (February, 1939)
  • Joe Turner Blues -"Benny Carter & his all-stars orchestra" (Okeh, 1940)
  • Wee Baby Blues -"Art Tatum & his Band" (Decca, February 1941)
  • Corrine Corrina -"Art Tatum & his Band" (Decca, June 1941)
  • Rocks in My Bed -"Big Joe Turner with Freddie Slack Trio" (Decca, december 1941)
  • Chains Of Love -"Joe Turner" (Atlantic, april 1951)
  • Sweet Sixteen -"Joe Turner" (Atlantic, February 1952)
  • Midnight Rockin' -"Joe Turner" (Colony, 1952)
  • Honey Hush -"Joe Turner" (Atlantic, August 1953)
  • Shake, Rattle And Roll -"Joe Turner" (Atlantic, april 1954)
  • Flip Flop And Fly -"Joe Turner" (Atlantic, February 1955)
  • Nothin' From Nothin'
  • Big Joe Turner vol.1 & 2 (Masters of Jazz)
  • Tell me pretty baby
  • Big Joe Turner, 1941-46 (Classics)
  • Greatest hits
  • Big Joe rides again

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