Donald's Encyclopedia of Popular Music
(b 24 May 1941, Philadelphia PA; d 11 December 1999, Chicago) Organ, composer; also soprano sax. He sstarted early on alto sax; played tenor at 17 with organist Jimmy McGriff, switched to organ '63 and became one of the most popular organists, with walking or rolling bass lines fitting either jazz or rockish settings. He played and recorded on Blue Note with Lou Donaldson '68-9. First own LP c1969 was a quartet date on Choice with George Coleman; the same year a sextet date Black Talk on Prestige was a good seller, followed by a series on that label with groups growing larger, some vocals added: Black Drops '70, Living Black! '70 (live at the Key Club, Newark), Soul Story '71 (Earland vocal), Charles III '72 (13 pieces plus vocalist Joe Lee Wilson; Earland plays electric piano and soprano sax as well as organ), Intensity '72, Live At The Lighthouse '72, The Dynamite Brothers '73, Leaving This Planet '73, Kharma '74 (live at Montreux). There were also albums on Milestone from the '70s; he went to Mercury for Odyssey '75 with a studio band; then to Muse '77-8 for Smokin', Mama Roots, Infant Eyes and Pleasant Afternoon, reunited on the first three with Jimmy Ponder (b 10 May '46 Pittsburgh), who played guitar on the first album. To Columbia with big studio bands for Coming To You Live c'79-80 (with Brecker brothers, girl group backing vocals), Jam '82. Back to Muse for In The Pocket '82, Whip Appeal '90, Ready And Able '95, etc. He was ordained a minister '95; Blowing The Blues Away '97 on Highnote continued friendly and soulful.