All About Jazz

Home » Musicians » Reuben Wilson

Reuben Wilson

In the late 60s, organist Reuben Wilson began ascending to his current status as a “godfather” of acid-jazz with “On Broadway”, the first in a string of albums for Blue Note Records. With these recordings Wilson revealed a command of funk that helped redefine the soul jazz movement created by the likes of Jimmy Smith, Jimmy McGriff and Richard “Groove” Holmes. “l was impressed by the great players,” Wilson said in an interview with Carlo Wolff for The Plain Dealer, But I thought the music could be well served by a pop feeling, I liked what drummers Bernard Purdie and ldris Muhammad were doing [Wilson has recorded with both drummers]. They were different from an Art Blakey or a Max Roach. Their appeal was to a younger crowd.”

While some collectors believe his best work is represented on his five Blue Note releases, Wilson also laid down some trailblazing sides for the Groove Merchant and Chess/Cadet labels. During the '80s, “Got To Get Your Own,” the title track to his 1974 Cadet album, caught on in dance clubs in England, “I was in Europe with the Fatback Band, when I heard about it,” recalls Wilson. “All of a sudden, the news people from the trades and all were interviewing me separately from the Fatback Band. “That's when l found out l had this big record. “Got To Get Your Own”, now an acid jazz classic, the song was reworked by Wilson for Organ Donor, his 1998 release for the Jazzateria label. Wilson's influence was still evident in the '90s thanks to such groups as US3 Tribe Called Quest and Nas sampling his compositions “Ronnie's Bonnie” and “Were In Love,” along with his arrangement of “Inner City Blues,” In 1995 Wilson toured Europe, Japan and North America as part of Guru's Jazzmatazz II, a crowd-pleasing all-star aggregation also featuring Kenny Garrett, Zachary Breaux and Donald Byrd.

Read more




Reuben Wilson:...

American Showplace Music


Movin' On



Fun House



Boogaloo To The...



Organ Blues





Shop Amazon

All About Jazz needs your support

All About Jazz & Jazz Near You were built to promote jazz music: both recorded albums and live events. We rely primarily on venues, festivals and musicians to promote their events through our platform. With club closures, limited reopenings and an uncertain future, we've pivoted our platform to collect, promote and broadcast livestream concerts to support our jazz musician friends. This is a significant but neccesary step that will help musicians and venues now, and in the future. You can help offset the cost of this essential undertaking by making a donation today. In return, we'll deliver an ad-free experience (which includes hiding the sticky footer ad). Thank you!

Get more of a good thing

Our weekly newsletter highlights our top stories and includes your local jazz events calendar.