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Organ trio facts for kids

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Medeski Martin & Wood
The Medeski, Martin and Wood organ trio demonstrates that an organ trio can come in different varieties; in place of a sax or electric guitarist, this band has an upright bass player as the third member.

An organ trio is a type of jazz band with three musicians. Usually a jazz organ trio consists of a Hammond organ player, a drummer, and either a jazz guitarist or a saxophone player.

Organ trios popular in the United States in the 1950s and 1960s. Organ trios usually performed jazz music that had influences from blues music. Organ trios are usually led by the organ player, who is called the leader of the trio.


Important organ trio leaders from the 1950s were organists such as Jimmy McGriff, Jimmy Smith, and Jack McDuff. In the late 1960s, organist Larry Young had a jazz fusion style organ trio. In the 1970s, Tony Williams had a jazz fusion band called Lifetime which was an organ trio. In the 1990s and 2000s, organist Joey DeFrancesco is an organ trio leader.

Other meanings

The word "organ trio" is also used to refer to the type (or "genre") of music played by organ trios from the 1950s and 1960s. For example, a person might say "I want to listen to some organ trio music." This would usually mean that they want to listen to music by Jimmy McGriff, Jimmy Smith, Jack McDuff, or other well-known organ trio leaders.

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