Billy "The Kid" Emerson


Biography

William Robert Emerson, 21 December 1929, Tarpon Springs, Florida, USA. Emerson’s father was a blues singer and the young Emerson played piano with the Billy Battle Band and other local groups before serving in the forces in 1952-54. On his return, he joined Ike Turner’s band in Memphis. Here, Emerson made his first records for Sun Records which displayed his talent for wordplay and included ‘No Teasing Around’, the jive-talking ‘The Woodchuck’, ‘Little Fine Healthy Thing’, and ‘Red Hot’, a song later taken up by rockabilly singer Billy Lee Riley and by Bob Luman. Emerson moved to Chicago soon afterwards, playing piano or organ on numerous recording sessions and releasing singles under his own name from 1955-57 for Vee Jay Records (‘Every Woman I Know (Crazy ’Bout Automobiles)’, later revived by Ry Cooder) and from 1958-59 for Chess Records (‘I’ll Get You Too’). There were later...

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