John P. Hammond biography
Born on November 13, 1942, John Paul Hammond, (a.k.a. John Hammond, Jr.), is a Grammy Award-winning American blues singer and guitarist. His father, John H. Hammond, was a renowned music producer and Civil Rights activist who changed the music industry in the 20th century by integrating it with the likes of Billie Holiday, Teddy Wilson, Big Joe Turner, Aretha Franklin and countless other black musicians.
Hammond was born on November 13, 1942, in New York City. He is the son of trailblazing music producer John Hammond and actress Jemison McBride and a descendant of the famous Vanderbilt family. Although he was raised predominantly by his mother and saw his father only sporadically, he received his middle name "Paul" in honor of his father's friend, actor Paul Robeson.
Inspired by Jimmy Reed's music, Hammond began playing guitar in high school. He went onto Antioch College but shortly thereafter, dropped out to pursue music full-time. By the 1960s he was a working musician, living in Greenwich Village, touring around the country and playing with the likes of Eric Clapton, Jimi Hendrix, Duane Allman and The Band.
Since 1962 Hammond has made 34 albums and won a Grammy Award, along with several nominations.
During his days as a young performer in New York City, he managed to get Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix to briefly play together in his band and is also credited for putting The Band on the map and getting Bob Dylan to tour with them.
Besides his own albums, Hammond scored music for Dustin Hoffman's 1970 flick, Little Big Man, and twenty years later, hosted The Search for Robert Johnson, a British documentary that explored the life of blues musician, Robert Johnson.
In the early 2000s, Hammond collaborated with musician Tom Waits and Los Lobos' David Hidalgo on various projects. His most recent album, Push Comes to Shove, was released in 2007.
He was inducted into the Blues Hall of Fame in 2011.
Hammond was married to Dana McDevitt in 1967, but the two later divorced. He is currently married to his second wife, Marla.