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a great man is gone :


Rest in peace, Jimmy Carl Black.

The following biography is partially written in the first person.

Jimmy was born Feb. 1st 1938 as James Inkanish, Jr. in El Paso Texas. When he was 1 year old, his mother married Carl Black, and they moved 20 miles north of El Paso, to the little town of Anthony, Texas, New Mexico, where he spent the next 19 years. A wonderful childhood. He started playing the piano at age 6, but didn't like it much. When he was twelve, he started to play the trumpet. He was solo first chair in the high school band.


He joined the U.S.A.F. in 1958 and started to play the drums because there weren't any trumpets in rock'n roll. So began a 41 year stint behind the tubs. (He 's still there.) He cut his first single in 1962 with a band called "The Keys" in Wichita, Kansas. He moved to California in 1964 and there he met Roy Estrada and Ray Collins and started the band called "The Soul Giants". When their guitar player got drafted into the Army, Ray said he knew a guitar player named Frank Zappa, so they auditioned him and hired him. One month later, Frank took over as leader of the rockin' combo and the band was called "The Mothers".


The band played a lot of GO-GO clubs and in '65 met Herb Cohen, who became their manager. With new management, they started playing places like The Action Club, The Whisky A-GO-GO, and The Trip on the Sunset Strip. They had added guitarist Henry Vestine of "Canned Heat" fame (who deceased, God bless him) and while at the Whisky. The famous producer Tom Wilson heard the band playing "Trouble Coming Every Day" and we had a record deal with MGM records.The day the contract was signed, Henry quit the band. Frank has just written "Who Are The Brain Police" and that was too much for Henry. Anyway, when they got to the studio to start "Freak Out", Tom Wilson, who thought he had signed a blues band, was completely shocked, when they recorded the first song.


It was "Who Are The Brain Police". Immediately he was on the phone to MGM saying that they had not signed a blues band, but some kind of weird band.

He certainly was right about that. The band made a lot of albums in the sixties and in late '69 the band disbanded. Unfortunately, it was the end of one of best bands ever.

We had the great pleasure to play with some of the greatest musicians of that era; Jimmy Hendrix, Janis Joplin, B.B. King, The Grateful Dead, The Jefferson Airplane, Cream, The Doors, Joe Cocker, Arthur Brown, Chicago, Blood, Sweat and Tears, Albert King, Otis Rush, John Mayal, The Turtles, John Lee Hooker, Chuck Berry, The Howlin' Wolf, Capt. Beefheart, Ten Years After, The Moody Blues, etc. He is proud to have met and jammed with those people. The real legends of rock 'n roll.

In 1970 Jimmy formed the band Geronimo Black (named after his youngest son) with Bunk Gardner and some very fine musicians. They played around LA for a couple of years before getting a record deal with MCA records. In the meantime in 1971 Jimmy went to England to make a movie called 200 Motels with Frank Zappa while making the movie he got a chance to meet and work with one of his favorite all time drummers Ringo Starr.


He also worked with Flo and Eddy (The Turtles) Keith Moon and a group of very nice people it was a very enjoyable experience since it was his first acting job. In 1972 the record Geronimo Black came out to very nice reviews but the promotion wasn't what it should have been. So in '73 Jimmy moved back to his home town of Anthony and made donuts For Winebel's Donuts. It wasn't a very good experience for a drummer that had been sort of a cult star. So he formed a band called "The Valley Loboys" and cut out a single (a very rare little biscuit). A couple of years later he changed the band to Big Sonny and The Loboys which put out one LP called ln Heat (it will be available on CD in 2000).


In 1980 Jimmy moved to Albuquerque, New Mexico where he put out a very rare 50's LP called Clearly Classic. This was a clear plastic bloobed shaped LP of which only 500 copies were made Also that year he put out another album of previously unreleased material from Geronimo Black called "Welcome Back Geronimo Black" (available soon). That same year The Grandmothers formed and put out one LP on Rhino records called A Mother Of An Anthology.


Don Preston, Bunk Gardner and Jimmy were the main guys in the band and they toured Europe for two years. One more record came out in 1982 on Rhino called "Looking up Grannies Dress". Unfortunately the band split up and Jimmy moved to Austin, Texas. He was having trouble making a living as a musician so he hooked up with an old friend of his from the '60's days; Arthur Brown (The crazy World of) and they started a painting company called "The Gentlemen of Color".


Meanwhile he had formed a blues band called Jimmy Carl Black and The Mannish Boys. They recorded a LP with a company called Amazing Records. While making that record, Jimmy and Arthur went in to the studio and made a classic 60's R&B record called Brown, Black and Blue which came out in 1989 on Blue Wave Records (since released on CD with Voiceprint Records, England). In 1988 Jimmy reformed the Austin Grandmothers. He was the only original Grandmother in the band, but that would change a few years later.


In 1991 Jimmy went to Europe to play with Eugene Chadbourne at the famous Moers New Music Jazz Festival. It was a twelve piece experimental band with Don Preston also in the band. That was the beginning of Jimmy's dream to move to Europe. In 1992 Jimmy moved to Vicenza, Italy with his wife, who was a school teacher with the military. While there Jimmy contacted Muffin Records in Stuttgart, Germany and made a deal to release the Grandmothers new CD called Dreams on Long Play which was recorded in Austin just before he moved to Europe.

At that time Eugene had contacted Jimmy to start touring in Europe as a duo. So began the more than 100 shows; over a two year period of time of the Jack and Jim Show. They recorded two CD's the first one on Fundamental Records called Locked in a Dutch Coffee shop. The second one on Firefly Records is a tribute to Capt Beefheart called Pachuco Cadaver.


The Grandmothers new Cd was released in 1993 and the first European tour, with newly acquired Don Preston and Bunk Gardner, started a series of tours to commence.


The second tour the Grannnies changed guitar players and hired a very talented Sandro Oliva from Rome, Italy. In l994 the Grannies released another CD with the new lineup called Who Could Imagine on Munich Records.After a much disputed law suite, I won't mention names, the band disbanded.


In l995 Jimmy started a blues band called "The Farrell & Black Band" and they have been playing together for almost five years and have two CD's the first one released in 1996 is called Cateract Jump on Fritz Records. The new CD, being released the 15th of Sept, is called Black Limousine on Stormy Monday Records.

In 1995 Jimmy also started playing with a great band from Liverpool, England called the Muffin Men. He has done six tours with this band as a lead singer. He's been on three CD's of the Muffins. The first is called Say Cheese and Thank You, the second is called Frankincense, and the third is called MufFinZ; they are all on Muffin Records Productions. Those records are over a four year period of time. There is a new one coming out in November 1999.


Jimmy released a CD of old unreleased material in 1996 called When Do We Get Paid on Cargo records. I am in the process of finishing a new R & B CD with a great band from Salzburg, Austria. This should be available in the first part of the year 2000.

He also has plans to record a CD of American Indian music that he has been wanting to do for a long time. Two dear friends of his are helping with the music. Essra Mohawk is writing the music to a song called "For the Little People" and Dawayne Bailey is writing the music to a song called "Chief Old Fox". He is providing the lyrics. The Grandmothers have a new CD coming out soon. A live recording from the Astoria Theater in London recorded on the 1998 tour with Bunk Gardner (our first tour since the trouble). lt is a good one (see discography for more info) Jimmy hopes to record in the year 2000 a CD that has been his dream from a long time. If he can find the financing, he will record with his three sons a CD of mostly his youngest son Geronimo's music. He plays guitar, Darrell plays drums and Gary plays bongos, conga's, thimbles and trumpet. It will be an interesting project. Jimmy hopes that you enjoy his homepage and will send comments through the e-mail or anyway you choose to keep in contact with him. So until the next update he's signing off.



The new century was really great for Jimmy as he got more into the computer. He was learning about music production and the dream of forming his own record company for release of rare material he´s been toting around for many years. The year 2000 was the year Jimmy did the most touring he has ever done in his career. He did over 150 dates in Europe and the United States. In the states the Grandmothers played 58 shows in 66 days and travelled 17,200 miles and were in 42 states. They were promoting the new CD; "Eating The Astoria". He did two tours with The Muffin Men and two tours with The Farrell/Black Band.

The year 2001 was also a busy time in Jimmy´s career as he released several CD´s in CD-Rom form on his new label, Inkanish Records. He did quite a bit of touring, but not as heavy as the year before, as he was told by his doctor in October that he had a weak case of Leukemia. He did get together with Eugene Chadbourne again, and The Jack and Jim Show was in business again. Two CDs resulted in the two small tours they did. "2001: A Spaced Odyssey" and "Reflections and Experiences of Jimi Hendrix" are the CDs that resulted in those tours. Also a new CD from The Muffin Men called "More Songs From The Campfire". In October he joined forces with his new pardner Robert O´Haire and the official beginning of Inkanish Records was solidified.

In March of this year the first two releases from Inkanish Records are happening. Jimmy Carl Black and the X-tra Combo released the new CD "Mercedes Benz" and The Grandmothers new CD "The Eternal Question". There are going to be two more releases before the end of the year but as of now, uncertain which ones it will be. It looks like an interesting year touring wise for Jimmy coming up. April-May-June will be with The Muffins in Europe, England, Scotland, and Ireland. In Sept.-Oct. there is a tour with The e.u. Grandmothers featuring Candy Zappa on vocals that is going to be great and then the winter tour with The Muffins again. I promise to keep this bio more up to date. Thank you all for the interest in this website.

Edited for grammar, punctuation and spelling.

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I'm Lonesome Cowboy Burt. :(

"if we'd all been in California..." "we wouldn't have been making ANY money"

I hope JCB finally made a little money out of his time with Frank. The band was dirt poor throughout his tenure with them.

They weren't only in it for the money.


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