Calling Jimmy Davis of Centerport, NY

SKF NOTE: Jimmy Davis was a grade or two behind me at Harborfields High School in Greenlawn, NY. He was a quiet kid, shy, with a good sense of humor.

He was also an outstanding drummer with deep jazz roots who loved Tony Williams. Jimmy’s drumset, like the Gretsch four-piece post here, was modeled after Tony’s signature drumset with Miles’s Second Great Quintet.

Around 1969, my friends/garage band members and I invited Jimmy to try out with our band as a replacement for our regular drummer who had just quit.

Knock on Wood is the only song I remember rehearsing in my parents’ garage that day. Instead of the song’s stock tap-tap-tap-tap break, Jimmy played a blistering drum interlude that absolutely dispirited our guitarist. While removing his guitar and putting it back in its case, the guitarist said, “I’m going to have to get a lot better if I’m going to play with that guy.”

And that was that. What began as a trial for a new drummer ended up with the total break-up of the band.

My sister, Maribeth, texted me today looking for Jimmy Davis. She’s part of a committee looking to notify all the members of Maribeth’s high school graduating class of an upcoming class reunion.

I told her the last time I saw Jimmy Davis he was living upstate New York in a town whose name I can’t recall. And I told her I’d see if I could find him.

So, Jimmy, if you read this blog and you have an interest in your high school reunion – please send me an email through this blog.


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