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Jimmy O'Bryant

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  • Born: Arkansas
  • Died: Chicago, IL
  • Years Active: 1920s


Biography All Music Guide

All Music Guide:

Of all the clarinetists in the 1920s, Jimmy O'Bryant probably came closest to duplicating the sound (if not the genius) of Johnny Dodds. O'Bryant worked with the Tennessee Ten (1920-1921), in a group co-led by Jelly Roll Morton and W.C. Handy (1923), and briefly with King Oliver (1924), but he is best remembered for his recordings with Lovie Austin's Blues Serenaders and his own Washboard Band; all of the latter have been reissued on two RST CDs. Jimmy O'Bryant's early death robbed him of any chance of gaining lasting fame, but his fine (if sometimes primitively recorded) performances as a leader give one a good idea as to his abilities.