Wayne Jackson RIP

We have lost the great member of the Stax soul family Wayne Jackson



He recorded a hit song his first day in the studio.

He played on 52 Number One records and 83 Gold and Platinum records.

He toured the world and shared the stage with many of the most influential artists in modern music.

He was one of the most influential trumpet players in all of rock ‘n’ roll

Wayne Jackson of the famed Memphis Horns has passed away at the age of 74.  Here’s a statement posted by his wife Amy:

Tonight I lost my husband and best friend to congestive heart failure. Wayne and I shared 25 magical and amazing years together. He was a beautiful soul who touched the world with his trumpet. As we mourn his passing, we also celebrate his incredible musical legacy, which he leaves us with. God gave him a gift, and he used it to the fullest. As he said in his 2012 acceptance speech for the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, “It’s been a dance of love between me and that trumpet.” He loved his family, his friends and his fans the world over. Tonight raise a toast to a life well-lived.
All my love,

Wayne played in the junior high and senior high bands taking all honors at the local and state level. In the 12th grade, he found himself playing with a group called The Mar-Keys. They had a number one instrumental smash called, “Last Night.” It was 1961.

What followed was a magical ride making music history with Otis Redding, Sam & Dave, Carla Thomas, Rufus Thomas, Isaac Hayes, Eddie Floyd, Albert King and the rest of the Stax Records roster. Said Jackson: “Back then, we had to do those songs from front to back with no mistakes and with good feelings. That’s what made musicians out of us. That’s what trained us. Now musicians all around the world judge their performances against those records with us on them, and that’s why we’re heroes.”


Wayne is centre back with trumpet.  Also pictured are Otis Redding (back to camera), Isaac Hayes to the right, there’s Booker T and the MGs and the rest of The Memphis Horns

In 1969, Wayne and sax man, Andrew Love, incorporated as The Memphis Horns and began offering their signature sound to artists around the world. Wayne found himself in the studio with a host of stars such as Elvis Presley, Neil Diamond, B.J. Thomas, James Taylor, Al Green, Aretha Franklin, Neil Young, U2, Billy Joel, Steve Winwood, Bonnie Raitt, Sting, Jack White and Lenny Kravitz.  He’s toured with Stephen Stills, Joe Cocker, Jimmy Buffett, Robert Cray, Luther Allison, Rod Stewart and The Doobie Brothers.

After moving to Nashville in the late Seventies, Wayne decided to trade in life on rock and roll jetliners for life on a tour bus. He spent three years traveling the roads with country music legend, Marty Robbins, during which time he became the only horn player ever to perform on the Grand Ole Opry. Then in the mid-eighties Peter Gabriel called, and Wayne’s work on “Sledgehammer” became legendary.

A small group of us met Wayne and Amy in 2013, visiting The Stax Museum where we were given special insights behind the scenes which were precious.  Then to top it off, we were invited for a brief visit to their beautiful condo.  What we saw at their home was amazing – memories – his trumpet imprint in rock ‘n’ roll history – photos of Wayne with Presley and John Wayne.  Hand-signed notes from famous artists.  Not to mention this Grammy for a Life-Time Achievement Award, presented to The Memphis Horns in 2012.



Wayne has a set of three books, chronicling his amazing musical journey. They are a worthy collection to match his impressive accomplishments.  To sum it all up, Wayne on his website says, “My life, so far, has been filled with Sweet Medicine and is a bridge spanning five generations of American music.

To us that day Wayne offered emotionally: “music has been my life – I’ve done nothing else”.

RIP Wayne Jackson


Amy and Wayne at home


Some source material for this article from www.waynejacksonmusic.com


We have lost the great member of the Stax soul family Wayne Jackson

We have lost the great member of the Stax soul family Wayne Jackson

We have lost the great member of the Stax soul family Wayne Jackson




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Author: Rob Dickens

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