The opening flute solo on the rock classic "Going Up the Country" by Canned Heat was performed by studio musician Jim Horn. As a young saxophonist, I noticed Jim's skillful musical talents on a number of my favorite recordings including Elvis Presley's Roustabout movie soundtrack and the Beach Boy's album Pet Sounds. I was taken by the wide range of sounds and feelings he could produce, both in rhythm and in tone. Jim can be heard on hundreds of my favorite recordings including Jose Feliciano's "Light My Fire", Steely Dan's "Royal Scam", Leon Russell's "Lady Blue", and "The Concert for Bangladesh" with George Harrison in 1971. Out of college, I purchased the two-CD set of John Denver live in concert, which was created to raise money for wildlife conservation and John introduced Jim during the concert and the way he spoke, full of admiration, gained my respect for Jim even more. Imagine my surprise and delight when visiting the Musicians Hall of Fame Museum in Nashville, having just taken a photo of Jim's flute on display, to be introduced to the man! He came in with his lovely wife to show the display to some out of town visitors. I shook his hand and said, "Jim, I work for NAMM and have always wanted to interview you." He reciprocated with, "I have always wanted to attend the NAMM Show." We worked out a deal and he attended the trade show and was interviewed the very next day! It gives me great pride, both as a saxophonist and as the historian for NAMM to have captured some of Jim's amazing stories for the NAMM Oral History program!
Be sure to check out my interview with Jim Horn.
Dan Del Fiorentino
NAMM Music Historian