Heath Brothers  

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The Heath Brothers is an American jazz group, formed in 1975 in Philadelphia, by the brothers Jimmy (tenor saxophone), Percy (bass), and Albert "Tootie" Heath (drums); and pianist Stanley Cowell. Tony Purrone (guitar) and Jimmy's son Mtume (percussion) joined the group later. Tootie left in 1978, and was replaced by Akira Tana for a short period before returning in 1982. They also added other sidemen for some of their recording dates.

The group issued four singles between 1978 and 1981, "Mellowdrama", "For the Public", "Use it (Don't abuse it)" and "Dreamin'". "Dreamin'", a track from the 1980 LP, "Expressions of Life", had the most airplay in the UK despite not reaching the UK charts.

The group with just two of the brothers, Jimmy and Tootie, and additional sidemen as needed, continued to perform and record after Percy's death. The DVD, Brotherly Jazz: The Heath Brothers, recorded in 2004, shortly before Percy Heath's death, was one of the last times the three brothers played together, and chronicled the Heath Brothers' personal lives as well as socio-political issues many jazz musicians dealt with in the later 20th century, including jail, drugs, discrimination and segregation. The 2009 CD Endurance was the first without Percy, and features seven original numbers by Jimmy, including "From a Lonely Bass", composed in memory of his late brother.

Jimmy Heath died on 19, January 2020.



  • Brotherly Jazz (2006) (DanSun Productions)

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