b. Walter Jackson, 19th March 1938, Pensacola, Florida, U.S.A.
d. 20th June 1983, Chicago, Illinois. U.S.A.
Walter Jackson was born in Florida in 1938.
His family soon relocated to Michigan, and Walter began singing in local groups whilst attending High School.
Walter had been crippled by polio as a child, and spent much of his life on crutches, although he never saw himself as a disabled person, however, his disability did contribute to a very personal and distinctive Soulful delivery.
By 1959, Walter had become a member of the vocal group the Velvetones, who recorded the song 'Who Took My Girl' b/w 'Stars Of Wonder' for the Deb Records imprint.
Walter returned to solo recording following the demise of the group, and, at the age of 24, he was persuaded by Carl Davis to leave Detroit and head for Chicago, following Carl attending a show at Detroit's 20 Grand Club and seeing Walter perform there.
Carl was the head of A & R for Columbia's subsidiary, the OKeh label.
Walter signed with OKeh in 1962, where he stayed for six years.
He recorded a couple of sides for Columbia in 1962 - 63, which included 'I Don't Want To Suffer' b/w 'This World Of Mine', 'Then Only Then' b/w 'Starting Tomorrow' and 'It Will Be The Last Time' b/w 'Opportunity'.
it's all over - 1964 / welcome home - 1965
The OKeh single, 'It's All Over' b/w 'Lee Cross' (1964), a Curtis Mayfield penned ballad, was Walter's first R & B hit.
It was followed by the songs 'Welcome Home' b/w 'Blowin In The Wind' (in 1965) and 'It's An Uphill Climb To The Bottom' b/w 'Tear For Tear' (in 1966) and 'Where Have All The Flowers Gone?' b/w 'I'll Keep On Trying', all of which reached the Soul Top 20.
Walter's version of 'My Ship is Comin' In' (first recorded by Jimmy Radcliffe and later by the Walker Brothers) failed to chart, although during his stay at OKeh he did chart 8 times in between November 1964 and July 1967.
In 1966 Carl Davis left the OKeh label and relocated to the Brunswick imprint, leaving Walter at the imprint.
speak her name - 1967 / feeling good - 1976
Eventually in 1973, Carl asked Walter to join Brunswick, where Walter recorded a couple of single releases (including 'It Doesn't Take Much'), along with some unreleased material, which remains in the vaults.
Carl Davis later left Brunswick in 1975 and went on to produce a further six albums for Walter.
i want to come back as a song - 1977 / good to see you - 1978
Walter recorded for various imprints including Cotillion ('Any Way That You Want Me' and 'Bless You'), Epic ('The Bed' and 'No Butterflies'), Wand ('No Easy Way Down'), Chi-Sound ('Feeling Good', 'I Want To Come Back As A Song' and 'Good To See You') and Brunswick ('I Never Had It So Good' and 'It Doesn't Take Much'), with Carl Davis.
Between 1973 and 1976 Walter retired from active performing.
send in the clowns - 1979 / tell me where it hurts - 1981
He returned with a series of minor hits, including an interpretation of Morris Albert's melody 'Feelings', however, his health was deteriorating.
Walters final recording sessions were held at Chicago's Universal Studio's in late 1982.
Walter Jackson died of a cerebral haemorrhage in 1983, ironically, on the same day that his final Brunswick 45, 'It's Cool' b/w 'When The Loving (Goes Out Of The Loving)', was released in the stores.
a portrait of walter jackson - 1984 / touching in the dark b/w 'if i had a chance' - 1981 single
The Chi-Sound label released a posthumous album entitled 'A Portrait Of Walter Jackson'.
The album contained the songs 'It's Cool' and 'Touching In The Dark' (the album seeing a U.K. release on the Bluebird Records imprint) licensed from the Kelli Arts imprint.
An excellent compilation, entitled 'Touching....The Soul', was released in 1999, and featured one of Walter's most heartfelt performances in the shape of 'Living Without You', which was taken from his 1981 album release 'Tell Me Where It Hurts'.
It's All Over (OKeh Records 1964)
Welcome Home: The Many Moods Of Walter Jackson (OKeh Records 1965)
Speak Her Name (OKeh Records 1967)
Feeling Good (Chi-Sound Records 1976)
I Want To Come Back As A Song (Chi-Sound Records 1977)
Good To See You (Chi-Sound Records 1978)
Send In The Clowns (Chi-Sound Records 1979)
Tell Me Where It Hurts (Columbia Records 1981)
A Portrait Of Walter Jackson (Bluebird Records 1984)
Touching...The Soul (Westside Records 1999)