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Lloyd "Tiny" Grimes was born in 1917 in Newport News, Virginia. Starting out as a pianist, Tiny switched to 4-string tenor guitar by 1940. Recording with Slam Stewart, Art Tatum, Charlie Parker, Ike Quebec, Hot Lips Page, Cozy Cole, Buck Clayton, John Hardee, Billy Holiday, and many others, he developped a guitar style that walked the line between Charlie Christian-influenced jazz and West Coast jump blues.
At the end of the 1940's he formed a group called "The Rocking Highlanders" who performed in Scottish attire including kilts, and recorded on Gotham. In the late 50's, Tiny recorded with Coleman Hawkins and others for Prestige's Swingville label
Tiny Grimes is the inventor of "rock and roll". Listen to "Tiny's Boogie", recorded at WOR studios on August 14, 1946, possibly the very first "rock and roll" recording.
In this day and age when all kinds of pathetic noodling and Elevator Music garbage passes for "jazz guitar", Tiny's swinging sound is a welcome reminder that there was a time when Jazz truly did rock.

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Tenor Guitar Hall of Fame

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