CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago bluesman Jimmy “Fast Fingers” Dawkins, known for his stellar guitar playing and mellow singing voice, has died. He was 76.
Delmark Records owner Bob Koester said Friday that Dawkins died Wednesday. The cause of death wasn’t immediately known.
James Henry Dawkins was born in Tchula, Miss. An only child, Dawkins taught himself to play guitar before moving to Chicago in the 1950s.
Koester said Dawkins did not begin his music career immediately, working instead in a box factory before taking to Chicago’s streets to play for tips. He formed a band in the 1960s and began working Chicago’s blues clubs, gaining a reputation as an excellent side man and playing with such notables as Otis Rush and Buddy Guy.
Dawkins first album, “Fast Fingers,” released on the Delmark label in 1969, boosted Dawkins’ reputation, particularly in Europe and Japan, where he toured frequently.