James Blood Ulmer


James “Blood” Ulmer (born February 8, 1940) is an American jazz, free funk and blues guitarist and singer. Ulmer plays a Gibson Byrdland guitar. His guitar sound has been described as “jagged” and “stinging”. His singing has been called “raggedly soulful”.

Willie James Ulmer was born in St. Matthews, South Carolina, United States. He began his career playing with soul jazz ensembles, first in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, from 1959 to 1964, and then in the Columbus, Ohio, area from 1964 to 1967. He recorded with organist Hank Marr in 1964 (released 1967). After moving to New York in 1971, Ulmer played with Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers, Joe Henderson, Paul Bley, Rashied Ali, and Larry Young.