R.I.P. jazz and R&B great Leonard "Doc" Gibbs

(September 16, 2021) Tonight we mourn the passing of a musical great. Leonard “Doc” Gibbs has been a mainstay in soul and jazz for a half century, and gathered another audience entirely as the musical director on the Emeril television show, staring chef Emeril Lagasse.

Fresh out of the Pennsylvania School of Fine Arts, Gibbs became a staple in the Philly jazz scene. He was given the nickname “Doc” by legendary saxman Grover Washington Jr, on whose Live at the Bijou album Gibbs played, when Gibbs helped Washington get over a cold with an herbal concoction.

But Gibbs’ real talent was on the sticks, and he played them behind a who’s who of R&B and jazz greats, including Eric Benet, Erykah Badu, Anita Baker, Nancy Wilson, George Benson and countless others.

(September 16, 2021) Tonight we mourn the passing of a musical great. Leonard “Doc” Gibbs has been a mainstay in soul and jazz for a half century, and gathered another audience entirely as the musical director on the Emeril television show, staring chef Emeril Lagasse.

Fresh out of the Pennsylvania School of Fine Arts, Gibbs became a staple in the Philly jazz scene. He was given the nickname “Doc” by legendary saxman Grover Washington Jr, on whose Live at the Bijou album Gibbs played, when Gibbs helped Washington get over a cold with an herbal concoction.

But Gibbs’ real talent was on the sticks, and he played them behind a who’s who of R&B and jazz greats, including Eric Benet, Erykah Badu, Anita Baker, Nancy Wilson, George Benson and countless others.

The Emeril show brought Gibbs a new televison audience, but he continued to perform around the world. He was also a member of the board of governors of the National Association of Recording Arts and Sciences and was an advocate for musical education, working regularly with kids through Young Audiences of Eastern Pennsylvania. 

In a year that has seen so many musical heroes die, the passing of Doc Gibbs is another sad chapter.

 

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