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Mitch Woods and His Rocket 88's

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  • Born: Brooklyn, NY
  • Years Active: 1980s, 1990s, 2000s


Biography All Music Guide

All Music Guide:

Dubbing his swinging approach "rock-a-boogie," pianist Mitch Woods and His Rocket 88s have revived the jump blues approach of the '40s and '50s. Originally from Brooklyn, NY, Mitch Woods moved to San Francisco in 1970. While he was growing up in Brooklyn, he studied both jazz and classical music, but when he relocated to the Bay Area, he primarily played jump blues and R&B. San Franciscan guitarist HiTide Harris introduced Woods to the joyous jive of Louis Jordan, and the pianist's musical tastes were transformed. Between 1970 and 1980, Woods performed as a solo artist, gigging at a number of local clubs. In 1980, he formed the Rocket 88s, featuring Harris on guitar, and four years later, the band released their debut album, Steady Date, on Blind Pig. The album led to concerts at national blues clubs and festivals, as well as several European dates in 1987. In 1988, Woods and the Rocket 88s released their second album, Mr. Boogie's Back in Town, and embarked on another round of shows in America, Canada, and Europe. Three years later, their third album, Solid Gold Cadillac, appeared. Woods and the Rocket 88s continued to tour and perform in the '90s, releasing their fourth album, Shakin' the Shack, in 1993. Jump for Joy was issued in early 2001.