-- Randy Chortkoff (CEO Delta Groove Music)
"I've had the pleasure of knowing Jimi Bott for over 25 years. He is not only my favorite drummer of choice but one of the hardest working and warmest human beings I know."
While still in high school Jimi started his professional career at the tender age of 17 with well-known Bay Area blues men, Paul Durkett and Byrd Hale. At 19 he joined Mark Hummel and the Blues Survivors, starting what would be the beginning of a perpetual life on the road. On his 21st birthday he auditioned for, and won, the gig of his dreams with Rod Piazza and the Mighty Flyers, the very same band that had inspired him to become a professional drummer. Next, he played with The Fabulous Thunderbirds for a total of 8 years. He joined The Mannish Boys and toured with them for an additional 8 years. Jimi took a break from touring to work in his Portland based studio, Roseleaf Studios. His discography boasts impressive credits to over 100 CD's and countless live performances with other blues greats.
Even Earlier Days
Born in San Francisco on August 13, 1965, some would say that music is in his blood. His father, Ken Bott, was his earliest musical influence. He would sing and play guitar every night after work entertaining Jimi, his brother Jere, their mom and two dogs (the audience was nearly spellbound each evening). Ken bought Jimi his very first drum and paid for his lessons. His mother Lee, though often rattled by his constant practicing, was always encouraging and supportive. Later, he and his brother Jere would record and produce their father's very late debut CD entitled The Blues From Bottsville (click here for more information and to buy a copy). At the age of 72, Ken was finally able to realize his life-long dream to write and record an album.
Jimi was privileged to be schooled by two of the best drum instructors in the country. From 1980 to 1983 he studied with the Bay Area great, Forrest Elledge. Later, while living in Los Angeles, he was one of the famous Murray Spivack's last (and according to Murray, one of his best) students ever, an incredible compliment considering Murray's list of students includes world-famous drummers such as Joe Morello (Dave Brubeck), David Garibaldi (Tower of Power), Louie Bellson and Chuck Silverman. Hand technician geniuses, both Forrest and Murray befriended Jimi and passed on their vast knowledge of stick control, musicality, and sense of rhythm. Forrest and Murray's influence flows through every performance of Jimi's.
A List of...
Some of the fine musicians Jimi has played with live or in studio:
The Mannish Boys
Delta Groove Harp Blast
Willie J Campbell
Kevin Selfe and the Tornadoes
Smokin Joe Kubek
Little Charlie Baty
Franck "Paris Slim" Goldwasser
Rich Del Grosso
John Del Toro Richardson
Willie "Big Eyes" Smith