Jerry Jeff Walker Wiki – Jerry Jeff Walker Biography
Jerry Jeff Walker was an American country music singer and songwriter. He is best known for writing the 1968 song “Mr. Bojangles”. The band traveled to Philadelphia to audition for Dick Clark’s American Bandstand, but were turned down. Members of the band found Dick Clark’s house and were able to get a recommendation to audition at New York City’s Baton Records through the company’s lead producer Sol Rabinowitz. The band was given a recording contract, but the studio wanted a quintet backed by studio musicians, which left Crosby and another member (Gerald T. Russell) out of their recordings.
After high school, Crosby joined the National Guard, but his thirst for adventure led him to go AWOL and roam the country busking for a living in New Orleans and throughout Texas, Florida, and New York, often accompanied by H.R. Stoneback (a friendship referenced in 1970’s “Stoney”). He played mostly ukulele until Harriet Ottenheimer, one of the founders of The Quorum, got him settled on a guitar in 1963. He adopted his stage name “Jerry Jeff Walker” in 1966.
He spent his early folk music days in Greenwich Village in the mid-1960s. He co-founded a band with Bob Bruno in the late-1960s called Circus Maximus that put out two albums, one with the popular FM radio hit “Wind”, but Bruno’s interest in jazz apparently diverged from Walker’s interest in folk music. Walker thus resumed his solo career and recorded the seminal album Mr. Bojangles with the help of David Bromberg and other influential Atlantic recording artists. He settled in Austin, Texas, in the 1970s, associating mainly with the outlaw country scene that included artists such as Michael Martin Murphey, Willie Nelson, Guy Clark, Waylon Jennings, and Townes Van Zandt.
A string of records for MCA and Elektra followed Jerry Jeff’s move to Austin, Texas, before he gave up on the mainstream music business and formed his own independent record label. Tried & True Music was founded in 1986, with his wife Susan as president and manager. Susan also founded Goodknight Music as his management company and Tried & True Artists for his bookings. A series of increasingly autobiographical records followed under the Tried & True imprint. Tried & True also sells his autobiography, Gypsy Songman. In 2004, Jerry Jeff released his first DVD of songs from his past as performed in an intimate setting in Austin.
He interpreted the songs of others such as Rodney Crowell, Guy Clark, Townes Van Zandt, Paul Siebel, Bob Dylan, Todd Snider, Dave Roberts, and even a rodeo clown named Billy Jim Baker. Some have called Jerry Jeff the Jimmy Buffett of Texas. It was Jerry Jeff who first drove Jimmy Buffett to Key West (from Coconut Grove, Florida in a Packard). Walker and Buffett also co-wrote the song “Railroad Lady” while riding the last run of the Panama Limited.
Jerry Jeff Walker Age
Jerry Jeff Walker was 78 years old. He was born on March 16, 1942, in Oneonta, New York, United States. He died on October 23, 2020.
Walker married Susan Streit in 1974 in Travis County, Texas.
They had two children: a son, Django Walker, who is also a musician, and a daughter Jessie Jane. Walker has a retreat on Ambergris Caye in Belize, where he recorded his Cowboy Boots and Bathing Suits album in 1998.
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Jerry Jeff Walker Death
Jerry Jeff Walker aka The Gypsy Songman is the songwriter behind the classic song “Mr. Bojangles” who died on October 23 at the age of 78. Walker is survived by his wife and manager, Susan, and children, Jesse Jane and Django. Walker’s cause of death has not been made public. In 2017, Walker battled throat cancer.
In 2018, Walker told the Austin Chronicle that in the previous year, he got “a real bad sore throat and the rest is history.” The Chronicle report noted that as soon his treatment was done, Walker was eager to begin performing again.
Cause of Death
Walker’s cause of death has not been made public. In 2017, Walker battled throat cancer.
Walker’s net worth is unknown.