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This project was made possible by funding through the Canadian Culture Online Strategy and the Heritage Policy Branch of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

Canadian Heritage

John Hammond

Biography

JOHN HAMMOND (producer, musician, music critic) was born December 15, 1910 and passed away July 10, 1987. Born into New York’s high society and possessing a keen interest in music, particularly blues, Hammond became an influential talent scout and producer discovering and promoting artists like Benny Goodman, Billie Holiday, Bessie Smith, Count Basie, Bob Dylan and Aretha Franklin. A musician himself, he studied piano, violin and and viola leaving Yale to pursue a career as a record producer and along the way making great strides in integrating the music business. Returning to the U.S. in the 1950s after a sojourn in Europe he employed the same enthusiasm for earlier jazz musicians in promoting the new folk music.