Johnny B. Moore
(Born January 24, 1950)
Born in Clarksdale, Mississippi, Moore's Baptist minister father, Floyd, taught his son to play the guitar when he seven years old. John Lee Hooker's "Boogie Chillen'," was the first piece Moore mastered, but his style was influenced by that of Magic Sam. In his early days Moore performed gospel music in his hometown of Clarksdale and later in Chicago with the Gospel Keys group. In 1964, the teenage Moore relocated to Chicago with his father. In high school Moore learned to read music, and his education was enhanced listening to blues records with Letha Jones, Little Johnny Jones' widow. By the late 1960s Moore was working in a lamp factory, but after work continued to play. He was further tutored by Jimmy Reed, whom he first met in his childhood, and then with the Charles Spiers band. By 1975, Moore found a further musical outlet by joining Koko Taylor's backing band, the Blues Machine, as lead guitarist. His lead guitar work appeared on Taylor's album The Earthshaker (1978). He toured separately with Taylor and Willie Dixon, undertaking European jaunts with both, and worked in Dixon's band until the latter's death in 1992. His debut album, Hard Times, was released in 1987 on the B.L.U.E.S. label. In the 1990s Moore recorded six more efforts of his own, and started the new millennium with Born in Clarksdale, Mississippi (2001) for the Austrian based Wolf record label. His Live at Blue Chicago (1996), was recorded in that club's basement and featured Ken Saydak on keyboards. The 1999 live album, Acoustic Blue Chicago featured Willie Kent, Lester Davenport and Bonnie Lee. Moore more often used a bottleneck on his guitar solos. He also made guest appearances on other blues musicians’ albums, including Willie Kent’s Too Hurt to Cry (1994).