“There are cool cats and there are cool Memphis cats but no one, not
Elvis, not Jerry Lee, not even the Wolf came close to epitomizing Memphis
and cool like Jim Dickinson did. He was the Top Cat Daddy, an
inspiration, a mentor and my friend.

If you knew his music and understood his role as one of the links between
black and white culture and between blues and rock and roll, you know what
I'm talking about. If he is unfamiliar to you, now's as good time as any
to get to know him, even though he's checked out of the motel.”

--Joe Nick Patoski

For more about Jim go to

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Remembering John Fry

I can't let this week slip by without writing more in tribute to John Fry, not the music man or the gentleman or the friend of all who wanted to learn about everything from studio engineering to aviation. (Yes, John taught many of his young engineers to fly airplanes). The John Fry I want to remember tonight was my prayer partner, my brother in Christ; a fearless, fervent witness to whomever would listen about the Gospel, the good news that "God so loved the world that He sent His only begotten Son that whosoever believes in Him will not perish but have everlasting life." John ran the Evangelism Explosion at Bellevue Baptist Church for eighteen years and himself knocked on many a door asking people if he could come into their homes and pray for them. Of course, John being John, music could not be far behind and along with my nephew, Eddie DeGarmo and his band, DeGarmo and Key, John had a great hand in recording the first Christian rock music that still rocks our world. I can see John now- up in Heaven, resetting the EQ in the great Control Room in the Sky and holding the Keys to the Kingdom, while St. Peter takes a break.

This photo was from such a fun night in Nov. 2012. Al Kapone gave a smoking performance, John accepted a Pyramid Award from the Blues Ball for Big Star, and Jim was posthumously honored as one of the inaugural members of the Memphis Music Hall of Fame. Two years later we celebrate the life of our remarkable, unforgettable, and irreplaceable friend, John Fry, and his almost fifty years of setting the bar for excellence in Memphis music. I praise the Lord for the privilege of having known and revered John. I will treasure his memory always.

(photo courtesy Sharon Bicks)

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