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Plas Johnson
Plas Johnson
(Tenor Saxophone)

(Whether it was the sax solo on Henry Mancini's "The Pink Panther" or Rod Stewart's "Tonight's The Night," Plas Johnson is widely regarded as perhaps the best of his time. Now primarily known for his acclaimed jazz work, this native of Louisiana first hit the road with the Charles Brown Blues Band in 1951. The next stop was the Army, and afterwards, he ended up in Los Angeles where he made his reputation playing on countless R&B classics like Larry Williams' "Bony Maronie," the Coasters "Youngblood" and many Sam Cooke dates. A gig with the Johnny Otis band led to his being "discovered" by Capitol's Dave Cavanaugh. Soon Plus was playing on dates with artists such as Nat "King" Cole, Peggy Lee, Ella Fitzgerald and Frank Sinatra. As he recalls, "When the 'pop' record companies started copying R&B records, I was chosen to play on 'em." Like many of the musicians who played on Brian's sessions, Plas was a 'graduate' of sessions produced by H.B. Barnum and Phil Spector.)

PLAS: "I remember very little about the dates, except I recognized Brian as an exceptional musician. They (the Beach Boys) were obviously different...just more musical...than other groups who were doing records at the time.

"Many times, we didn't have music, he would sing out the parts. He was very serious. And when he got to the studio, Brian was totally engrossed in his music, so it wasn't a social affair. He was easy to work with, because he was very musical, and he knew how to get stuff done."

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