Joe Liggins

Joe Liggins (July 9, 1915 - July 26, 1987) was a notable jazz, blues, and mostly R&B pianist, who played with the band Joe Liggins and the Honeydrippers in the 1940s and 1950s, as their frontman. His band was often a staple on the R&B chart in those years, with their biggest hit being "The Honeydripper", released in 1945. That single topped the, then called race chart, for 18 weeks. More than 60 years later, "The Honeydripper" remains tied with Louis Jordan's "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie" for the longest-ever stay at the top of that chart. ...show more

Joe Liggins (July 9, 1915 - July 26, 1987) was a notable jazz, blues, and mostly R&B pianist, who played with the band Joe Liggins and the Honeydrippers in the 1940s and 1950s, as their frontman. His band was often a staple on the R&B chart in those years, with their biggest hit being "The Honeydripper", released in 1945. That single topped the, then called race chart, for 18 weeks. More than 60 years later, "The Honeydripper" remains tied with Louis Jordan's "Choo Choo Ch'Boogie" for the longest-ever stay at the top of that chart.

It logged a reported two million. Life Liggins was born in Guthrie, Oklahoma and moved to San Diego, California in 1932. By the time he moved again, to Los Angeles in 1939, he began playing with various groups, including Sammy Franklin's California Rhythm Rascals. When Liggins asked him to record his song "The Honeydripper", Franklin declined, prompting Liggins to start his own band, which created many more hits in the next years, including "Got a Right to Cry" and the widely covered songs, "Tanya" and "Roll 'Em".

Earl Hooker is noted for his cover version of "Tanya". In March 1954, the band took part in a benefit show held at the Club 5-4 in Los Angeles for the wife of Stan Getz. Joe joined his brother Jimmy at Specialty Records in 1950, where he gained more hits including: "Rag Mop", "Boom-Chick-A-Boogie", "Pink Champagne", and "Little Joe's Boogie". His songs were mostly a blend of jump blues and basic R&B. ...show less