Jamie Oldaker – in memoriam
COUNTRY: United States
For over thirty years, Jamie Oldaker has built a career in the music industry as a respected drummer, producer and discoverer of talent. Raised in Tulsa, Oklahoma, Jamie was inspired by his father to take up drumming. After seeing the Beatles on Ed Sullivan, Jamie immediately knew his calling.
After high school, Jamie left Tulsa for St. Louis to perform with Phil Driscoll at famed music hotspot The Basement. It was with Phil’s band that Jamie finally got the opportunity to perform on the Ed Sullivan show, on the same stage the Beatles had performed!
After moving back to Tulsa, Jamie was introduced to Bob Seger, who had just finished recording Smokin OPS. Jamie was hired to join Seger’s band, and they recorded the album Back in 72.
Jamie continued playing the local Tulsa scene between tours, where singer-songwriter J.J. Cale often sat in with his band. Cale had just been signed to Leon Russell’s newly formed Shelter Records and was in town looking for musicians. He quickly hired Jamie as a session musician to work at Tulsa’s legendary Church Studio. While at Shelter, Jamie recorded Stop All that Jazz, The Gap Band, Georgie Fame, and a number of other albums with Leon Russell and the Gap Band.
Shortly afterward, Jamie headed to Criteria Studios in Miami to record with Eric Clapton on his classic 461 Ocean Blvd. It was to be the first of 11 albums he would record with Clapton, including Slowhand, There’s One in Every Crowd, EC was Here, and Backless.
In between the two major tours that followed, Jamie somehow found time to record two albums with blues artist Freddie King for RSO Records, and the Gold-selling album Where I Should Be with Peter Frampton.
Back working with Eric Clapton, Jamie and the rest of the band soon left for Monserett to record Behind the Sun with Phil Collins at George Martin’s famous AIR Studios. During the tour that followed, one of the most memorable stops was the Philadelphia Live Aid concert, broadcast worldwide to an audience of 2 billion people!
The list of artists Jamie has worked with reads like a veritable Who’s Who of the music industry. Notables include Ronnie Dunn, Ace Frehley, Stephen Stills, Buddy Guy, Jimmie Vaughn, Albert Collins, Robert Cray and Tulsa band The Tractors.
Jamie is currently producing Willis Alan Ramsey’s new album in Austin, TX. He recently finished producing a project with friends he has worked with throughout the years: Eric Clapton, Vince Gill, Tony Joe White, Willis Alan Ramsey, Taj Mahal, Peter Frampton, Bonnie Bramlett, Ray Benson, JJ Cale, Willie Nelson and others. The album is called Mad Dogs & Okies, and features artists either from Oklahoma or who have been involved with and influenced by Oklahoma music.